Clann Mhic Ruairí is four brothers from Donegal; Aodh, Tony, Dónall, and Seán Mac Ruairí; and Megan Nic Ruairí, Tony’s daughter.
Everyone sings and Megan, Dónall, and Aodh also play piano, bodhran, and guitar, respectively. They’re helped out by some mighty friends on this recording—John McSherry on pipes and whistles, Dónal O’Connor on fiddle—but it’s the singing that’s the real focus of Súile.
For Canadian listeners, there will be echoes of The Rankins and Leahy, although Clann Mhic Ruairí, aside from singing in Gaelic, are more steadfastly traditional than either of those two groups. At times there’s an old-fashioned air to the music that’s really quite enjoyable (to whit, Dúlamán and the self-composed title track, which I could see doing well at Eurovision).
So not art music then, but a really nice, well-played and well-sung collection of Irish traditional song that’s just the right side of Clannad for these ears.