Jim Byrne and The Blackwoods at Bar Brel February 2012

Photo: jim byrne and the blackwoods. Support by Dinny

On a wet night in Glasgow Jim Byrne and his band brought some colour and enriching and soothing sounds to Brel Bar. It was full and cosy and I took a seat near the front so that I could get some good shots. This was the CD Launch gig for Jim?s new album The Innocent and he was accompanied by his Blackwoods band which consisted of Graham Macintosh (banjo, violin), Elanor Gunn (violin) Dinny (guitar, autoharp and vocals), Peter Byrne, (bass, percussion, backing vocals) The band all did a very good job.

Stand out songs were - Two Empty Chairs, Sand in Our Shoes, and cover song Thirteen. I enjoyed the gypsy guitar vibe of Down by the Wildwood, after which Byrne took the temperature down with the comforting Sweeter than a Rose and the earthy Sand in Our Shoes.? The band also performed Thinking Tonight Of My Blue Eyes, Satisfied Mind ( Joe "Red" Hayes), There Stands The Glass (Russ Hull, Mary Jean Shurtz and Audrey Greisham) and a quirky version of Make Me a Pallet on the Floor. Byrne's cover songs are well thought out as are his own songs and show his obvious love of music.

Photo: jim byrne brel. Jim?s music has a warm nostalgic feel and their set was very much in his chilled out late night groove style. I am impressed by the way he maintains his Scottishness while taking on his American folk and blues influences. His sound draws on diverse influences such as Johnny Cash and Tom Waits, as well as others. Jim Byrne is a singer songwriter influenced by Americana, folk, alt-country and blues music.

Byrne has a deep expressive voice and his songs are slightly eccentric making for a distinctive sound.? He steered a calm ship with his quiet relaxed manner and smile which filters through his mellow country tunes and quality guitar playing.?

The Innocent has more atmosphere and is a step on from his well received previous album Every Day is Sunshine. The album has an earthy sound and his songs have quirky and unexpected lyrics.? A wide variety of instruments are played on the record adding a rootsy sound with a richer depth . A highly enjoyable night and I recommend checking out Jim's latest album.

Dinny sang a few of her own songs as the support slot. Her voie has a very pure quality and she is a talented guitarist.

Review and Photos by Pauline Keightley -? http://www.musicfootnotes.com/

You can buy the album at www.songsbyjimbyrne.com

Set List

  • Fancy Wooden Box
  • Tell Me You Love Me Again
  • Down By The Wildwood
  • Thinking Tonight Of My Blue Eyes
  • Satisfied Mind (cover song by Joe "Red" Hayes)
  • Thirteen
  • Sweeter Than A Rose
  • Sand In Our Shoes

Second set:

  • You Don't Know
  • There Stands The Glass (cover song by Russ Hull, Mary Jean Shurtz and Audrey Greisham)
  • Two Empty Chairs
  • When You Bit Into That Apple
  • Make Me Down A Palett On Your Floor
  • The Handle's Broken On My Cup
  • Daddy's Car