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Infos and Tab

Christian M. Reu
Here you get some information about the tunes on "Northbound" and "Return to Ireland". (* including tabs - extract out of my tab-book):

On Celtic Shores (Christian Reu)

This first piece of my album developed after a trip to the "Festival de Cornouaille" in Quimper, Britanny, in July 2004. On my way back to the hotel I listened to a pipe band from Asturias playing in a narrow street. I remembered one tune they played constantly: a simple but beautiful traditional slow air. Back in the hotel I immediateley wrote down the melody and came along with my own ideas. The piece is not only a celebration of traditional music from Northern Spain but is also dedicated to the music of all Celtic nations. 
Pour les Loups [For the Wolves] (Christian Reu)

I composed this tune after watching the French movie "Le Pacte des Loups". Wolves have always fascinated me. This piece is strongly influenced by the Breton tradition of ballads and laments called "Gwerz".

Strolling in Oxford (Christian Reu)

In April 2004 I visited the first Oxford Folk Festival. Oxford is a charming university town full of tradition and flair. Strolling through the streets of Oxford humming English folk songs gave this medley of jigs its title.

Air for June / Northbound (Christian Reu)

June Tabor, the great English folk diva, and her interpretation of Celtic slow airs is the reason for the first tune of this medley. The second is a dancing tune and reflects my passion to always spend my holidays in cold and rainy Celtic countries. 

Back to Britanny (Christian Reu)

These two compositions, a Gwerz followed by a march, are dedicated to Breton guitar player Soig Sibéril.

Wedding March / Time to Dance (Christian Reu)

This medley was meant to be a present for the wedding of my friends Oliver and Susann in August 2002. Unfortunately it was finished one year later!

Swing Low Sweet Chariot (trad./arr. Christian Reu)

I hope this arrangement of a well-known gospel tune swings! It changed considerably over the years.

Highland Lullaby (Christian Reu)

Imagine a mother rocking her baby to sleep in the cold Scottish highlands! 

Suite de Gavottes (trad. / Christian Reu)

The Gavotte is Britanny's most popular dance form. This suite of four tunes combines some famous themes from the region of Pourlet with some of my own melodies. This is a tribute to all great Breton folk bands and musicians too numerous to mention.

Silent Prayer (Christian Reu)

An intense and very sad piece, followed by a faster one. The change between minor and major harmonies in the fast part gives this tune a very classical feeling.

Fingerprints (Christian Reu)

This piece was originally composed for solo guitar. After a session with Martin Simpson I decided to add a second guitar part. 

The Sound of Taransay (Christian Reu)

This is the name of a sea northwest of Harris (in Gaelic "Na Hearadh"), one of the Western Isles better known as the Outer Hebrides. It is always very hard to choose titles for my own compositions; I think all musicians out there know this problem.

Andros au Printemps [Andros in Spring] (trad. / Christian Reu)

Another set of Breton dance tunes, consisting of original and traditional melodies. Like the Gavotte the "An Dro" (or "En dro") is still a well-known set dance in Britanny.

One Heart in Whitby (Christian Reu)

I never would publish a CD without honouring Martin Simpson, the English fingerstyle guitarist who probably influenced me the most. In May 2003 I had the pleasure to take some private guitar lessons with Martin in his home in Whitby, UK. This last track is the result of our meeting both in musical and personal terms!

The Shamrock Medley - Download Tab (pdf ap. 1 MB)

a- Return to Ireland (Christian Reu)
b- The Róisín Dubh Hornpipe (Christian Reu)

My own composition, consisting of a ballad followed by a hornpipe. The slow air expresses my feelings leaving Ireland, and the anticipation to return. The hornpipe shall remind me of two unforgettable nights full of music in a pub in Galway June 1999. 

My Hometown (John MacLellan/arr. Ch. Reu) - Download Tab (pdf ap 500 KB)

A slow bagpipe march in D major written by John MacLellan, later pipe major of the 8th Argylls. I learned this piece from the pipe playing of Scotsman Iain MacInnes. Thanks to Duck Baker for his advice arranging this one!

Hommage à Breizh (Christian Reu) - Download Tab (pdf ap. 700 KB)

Breizh is the old celtic name for Britanny, the northwest region of France. The tune is inspired by Soig Sibéril, a great acoustic guitarist and session player from the area. 

É Horò (trad./arr. Christian Reu)

DThis is a gaelic tune I learned from the singing of Mary Jane Lamond. Mary Jane comes from Cape Breton Island/Canada where gaelic music is presented in its purest form. The song is an emigrant's lament and tells the story of Highlanders who saw the overwhelming Canadian forests for the very first time.

Marisa's Dance (Christian Reu)

I wrote this piece for my lively niece Marisa. When she was about two years old her cool dancing style inspired me to write a dancing tune which turned out to have a Celtic sound, of course. Thanks Marisa!

Waltzing in Spring (Christian Reu)

I composed this slow waltz while waiting for spring. 

Marche au temps perdu (Christian Reu)

Another piece in D minor inspired by Breton folk music. Listening to it after recording, I discovered some Jewish Klezmer elements. 

Sights of Northumbria (Christian Reu)

This is a march which pays tribute to North English regions Northumberland and Cumbria both near the Scottish border. The tune also honours Northumbrian small pipes player Kathryn Tickell. 

Martin's Medley

a- Raglan Road (trad./arr. Martin Simpson)
b- Greenfields (Christian Reu)
A tribute to Martin Simpson, fingerstyle guitarist extraordinaire. 

Tony's Jigs (Christian Reu)

A medley of jigs dedicated to Scottish guitar player Tony McManus. His special way of executing triplets on the guitar influenced my playing. Some of these melodies are probably not my own but I forgot the titles.

Ar Bhruach na Carraige Báine (On Top of the White Rock)
(trad./arr. Christian Reu)

I learned this slow air from Irish singer Séamus Begley. The lyrics are very sad. The man is standing on the top of the white rock lamenting his love who refused him. 

Scandinavian Medley

a- Josefin's Waltz (Roger Tallroth/arr. Christian Reu)
A slow waltz composed by Swedish guitarist Roger Tallroth. I learned this piece from the Irish group Dervish. 
b- Child of April (Annbjørg Lien/arr. Christian Reu)
Norwegian fiddle player Annbjørg Lien composed a lot of wonderful melodies. This one was written for her dad and it was a pleasure to arrange it.

The Heights of Cassino (D. MacRae/arr. Christian Reu)

A Scottish pipe tune I learned from Scottish fiddler Eilidh Shaw.  

An Mhaighdean Mhara (The Mermaid) (trad./arr. Christian Reu)

A slow Irish air I learned from the singing of Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh. It's a very tragic story: A fisherman falls in love with a mermaid. He takes her crown away, knowing that she will forget her origins. The years pass and they have two children. One day while playing the kids find the crown and place it on their mother's head. The mermaid yearns for the sea, and leaves her husband and children.