‘Hello World’ from JigJam - infectious for all the right reasons

(October 24, 2016)

Alittle over a year ago, I was introduced to 'Celtgrass' - a fusion of Celtic and Appalachian music from an Irish band called JigJam. A year on from their debut album, JigJam still turn out an iridescent mix of Irish folk and bluegrass Hello World front coverpulled together through blistering finger work and reflective lyrics, effectively mingling tradition with originality - and the point that strikes home is the complete absence of any discernible join between the two.

Their second album ‘Hello World’ takes you through the depths of their respect for the styles they blend. There’s impressive original compositions like ‘Hello World’, ‘Set Me Free’, ‘Sometimes’ and ‘Why Oh Why’, as for the tradition, there’s ‘Ireland’s Green Shore’ and ‘The Mermaid’ and to prove JigJam are unafraid to create their own take on classic bluegrass there’s a terrific version of Peter Rowan’s ‘Dust Bowl Children’. Fast or slow, dazzling or meditative, ‘Hello World’ is infectious for all the right reasons.

JigJam are Jamie McKeogh (guitar, tenor banjo, bouzouki, lead vocals), Daithi Melia (five-string banjo, guitar, vocals) Cathal Guinan (double bass, fiddle, vocals) and Gavin Strappe (mandolin, tenor banjo, electric tenor guitar, vocals). ‘Hello World’ is infectious for all the right reasons.


Review: Tom Franks

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