Can you spot the common properties of these?
No, neither can I.

Although I like most music, I don't sing (except in private), for a very good reason, summed up well by:

I'm tone dumb, which is worse than being tone deaf because you know you're singing out of tune but can't do anything about it.

-- Paul Clarke, rec.arts.sf.written

Mozart tells us what it's like to be human, Beethoven tells us what it's like to be Beethoven, and Bach tells us what it's like to be the universe.

-- Douglas Adams(attrib)

Sleep is an excellent way of listening to an opera.

-- James Stephens (1882-1950)


The usual suspects -- Bach, Beethoven, Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky, .... I like mostly the big noisy stuff -- symphonies and concertos -- that just sweeps me along.

I'm neutral about chamber music: I usually find it a bit weedy. I positively dislike opera (despite having based the names of three toy computer languages on operas in High Integrity Compilation): I think it sounds strained and affected. (I do like some vocal classical music -- Beethoven's 9th, Carl Orff's Carmina Burana -- but not opera.)

You say CarMEEna, and I say CarMEYEna,
You say BurAHna, and I say BurAYna,
CarMEEna, CarMEYEna, BurAHna, BurAYna,
Let's Carl the whole thing Orff.

-- Jeffrey Salzberg



Clannad are an Irish family group, originally singing traditional music, now more of their own work. They rose to 'overnight fame', after 20 years in the business, with the theme of the TV series Harry's Game, also used in the film Patriot Games. Their song I Will Find You was the love theme from the film The Last of the Mohicans.


[The Celtic Voice]


albums include:

1976: Dulaman
1980: Crann Ull
1982: Fuaim
1983: Magical Ring
1984: Legend -- music from TV series Robin of Sherwood
1985: Macalla
1986: Ring of Gold
1987: Sirius
1989: Atlantic Realm -- music from the BBC TV series
1989: Pastpresent -- compilation album
1990: Anam
1993: Banba
1996: Lore -- CD includes bonus compilation album Themes and Dreams
1997: Landmarks
1998: An Diolaim -- compilation album -- the folk roots of Clannad
1999: The Celtic Voice
2013: Nádúr

Máire Brennan

[Heart Strings]

[Two Horizons]

Clannad's lead singer, Máire (Moya) Brennan, also has solo albums:

1992: Máire
1994: Misty Eyed Adventures
1998: Perfect Time
1999: Whisper to the Wild Water
2003: Two Horizons
2006: Signature
2008: Heart Strings -- live

other material



Enya is a member of the Brennan family, and sang in early Clannad, but has since gone solo. Her music features very complex sounds, very distinctive, and rich with overlays -- "ethereal" or "out of this world" might describe it.

The Celts was used in the BBC TV series of the same name. Her songs have also been features in movies, such as Green Card, Home and Away, and L. A. Story.


[And Winter Came...]

albums include:

1986: The Celts
1988: Watermark
1991: Shepherd Moons
1995: The Memory of Trees
1997: Paint the Sky with Stars -- A 'Best of Enya' compilation, plus two new tracks: 'Only if...' and 'Paint the Sky with Stars'
2000: A Day Without Rain
2005: Amarantine
2008: And Winter Came...
2015: Dark Sky Island

there are also various singles

other material



I originally listened to this group because they were recommended as 'Clannad-esque', although their music is mainly Scottish rather than Irish. Their earlier albums are almost entirely in Scottish Gaelic, but their more recent albums have more of the lyrics in English (so now I can tell the words really are as melancholy as they sound!) The instrumental jigs and reels counterpoint the vocal tracks well, so the overall effect isn't at all dreary. But it is emotional.


[Roses and Tears]

[Choice Language]

albums include:

1987: Crosswinds
1989: Sidewaulk
1991: Delirium
1992:Get Out — special edition of live tracks and remixes
1993: Secret People
1995: To the Moon
1995: The Blood is Strong — music from the TV shows The Blood is Strong, Prince Among Islands, and Highlanders
1997: Beautiful Wasteland
2000: Nàdurra
2001: An Introduction to — compilation album
2002: Live in Concert — compilation album
2003: Choice Language
2008: Roses and Tears

Karen Matheson

[Time to Fall]

Capercaillie's lead singer, Karen Matheson, also has solo albums:

1996: The Dreaming Sea
2002: Time to Fall
2005: Downriver
2015: Urram

other material


Loreena McKennitt
Another recommendation from those who said "If you like Enya, you'll like this". And, although the quality of the two artist's voices are very different, I do like both. Another combination of instrumental and vocal, Loreena McKennitt has a distinctive harp, and an incredible voice. Some tracks are classical poems set to original music, such as Tennyson's The Lady of Shalott, Yeats' The Two Trees.


[The Book of Secrets]

albums include:

1985: Elemental
1987: To Drive the Cold Winter Away
1989: Parallel Dreams
1991: The Visit
1994: The Mask and Mirror
1995: A Winter Garden -- 5 Christmas songs
1997: The Book of Secrets
2006: An Ancient Muse

other material


Jean Michel Jarre

It's high tech, but it's still music.


[Oxygene 7-13]

albums include:

1976: Oxygene
1978: Equinoxe
1981: Magnetic Fields
1984: Zoolook
1986: Rendez-Vous
1990: Waiting for Cousteau -- [rather too much "water music" at the end for my taste]
1993: Chronologie
1997: Oxygene 7-13

other material


Meat Loaf

Can you tell the relationship between this music and the above? I can't, but it doesn't stop me liking it!


[Couldn't Have Said it Better]

albums include:

1977: Bat Out of Hell
1981: Bat Out of Hell, Re-Vamped
1981: Dead Ringer
1983: Midnight at the Lost and Found
1984: Bad Attitude
1986: Blind Before I Stop
1993: Heaven and Hell (with Bonnie Tyler)
1995: Welcome to the Neighbourhood
2003: Couldn't Have Said it Better
2006: Bat Out of Hell III: The Monster is Loose
2010: Hang Cool Teddy Bear
2016: Braver Than We Are


You know how you hear the old thing about: 'Boy. He made it really look easy'? Well. I make it look really hard.

-- Meat Loaf

other material