Blarneygrass Music

Paddy on the Railway (TNT)

Ten Penny Bit

By David Lilly

To my knowledge, this music is as authentically Irish as the stones in front of Molly Malone's and the large mantle behind the bar inside. I'm no connoisseur of Irish music, but I'm sure I can smell the sweat of U2's ancestors as I'm listening to Ten Penny Bit play like Ireland is in their blood throughout the Paddy on the Railway CD.

These folks sure know how to start a CD with a big "Céad míle fáilte" (a very enthusiastic "Welcome" in Gaelic). The infectious singalong opener, "Paddy on the Railway," is a crowd pleaser for all ages, as is the instrumental "La Grane Chaine/Miss Cloud's" that follows. Imagine your eldest relative or friend moving the limbs of an infant in time to some real catchy beats and everyone else in between those ages dancing, as folks used to say, to beat the band. The next couple of songs mellow things out a bit, which is good, as you get a pleasant earful while you rest up for the next dance.

The only criticism I can offer is that Ten Penny Bit's version of "Star of the County Down" sounds almost like a dirge compared to the only other version I've heard, which is on the legendary Irish Heartbeat by Van Morrison & The Chieftains. But it's unfair to compare the two CDs. However, if you find yourself wanting a couple of hours of great Irish folk music, Paddy on the Railway is an excellent companion to the aforementioned disc. Visit these folks vicariously at

www.rivalpro.com/-tenpennybit/

and/or drop them a line at

tenpennybit@cs.com