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Val Haines of Mardles

reviews Maid on the Shore by Niamh Boadle

From an Irish family in Lancashire, 21 year old Niamh is currently studying for a Folk Music Degree at Newcastle University but has been involved in music and dance for many years as a classical guitarist and violinČist, step dancer, rapper dancer and as a BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Awards finalist. She is primarily a singer, accompanying herself on guitar, but on this album adds fiddle, bodČhran, whistles and mandolin.

It's a showcase for her original interpretations of traditional and contemporary songs and also for her own excellent skill as a songwriter. The alČbum opens with her own song Forget me not, based on an 1881 newspaper story concernČing the tragedy of local lass Annie Ratcliffe. Another of Niamh's own songs is the jazzy Bill's Missed the Last Boat Back, about her grandfather during World War 2, with a piČano accompaniment from Paul Sartin. Kate Fagan's Roll You Sweet Rain is a treat, with Paul Sartin this time adding an oboe track. The album finishes with the traditional Maid on the Shore given the original Niamh Boadle treatment. Niamh has a style of her own, which is really refreshing to hear. With this in mind, I would definitely like to see her live show.
June 2015