Canada has produced more than a few singers/songwriters in the field of popular and folk music, the most notable being Kate and Anna McGarrigle. Of the other artists I think only one can match the musical talents of those famous sisters and that one is Loreena McKennitt. Quite possibly nowhere near as famous as she ought to be but over the past thirty years she has quietly created a huge back catalogue of excellent music and has built up a very large and dedicated fan base world wide.
Her music is described on her web site as ‘eclectic Celtic’ absorbing other influences from Eastern Europe and the Middle East.
She is also rather adept at taking the poetry of Yeats, Tennyson and Shakespeare among others and setting their words to music (two examples are included here).
Because of the many styles blended into her recordings she draws on musicians from many genres but there is always a core built around Brian Hughes on guitar, Caroline LaVelle on cello and the excellent Hugh Marsh on violin.
I seem to have gone 'over the top' and posted nine videos but it could have been a lot more, difficult to know what to leave out! Perhaps a part 2 will be necessary.
In the meantime pour yourself a dram or two of uisce beatha ("water of life"), turn up the volume and relax into a reverie of glorious music.