A hybridization of Irish traditional folk music with musical hall vigor and chamber music style arrangements.
In their 10 plus years (from 1982 on), as an ensemble playing festivals, pubs, clubs, heard on radio and seen in concert halls and theaters, Jamie O’Reilly & the Rogues were known for their showmanship, shimmering musical arrangements, and sense of camaraderie on stage. Their theatrical sets of music had an old-time variety show feel. Featured was Jamie’s haunting and lilting soprano on Celtic ballads, as well as finely crafted harmony vocals, and stellar instrumentals delivered by the five Rogues: Tom and Paul Amandes, Peter Swenson, John Floeter and Stuart Rosenberg. Brother-to-brother comic patter by the Amandes’ made the act complete.
Listeners to this newly reissued and remastered CD compilation, (combining “On the Banks of the Roses,” recorded at WFMT, Chicago, 1986, and “Bangers & Ballads”, recorded live in 1989,) will hear favorites from the Celtic catalog played on guitars, violin, tin whistle, mandolin, double bass, piano and rhythmically enhanced by the bodhran, along with the Rogues’ singular interpretations of lesser known material. All of this musical prowess is on display on such numbers as Will Ye Go Lassie Go, Banks of the Roses, Phil the Fluter’s Ball, The Wren, and a thrilling Sea Song medley, along with Tom Amandes’ original songs: The Ballad of the Rogues and She Would Sing the Kerry Dances, and other dynamic numbers.
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“The CD makes it clear that this was probably one of the best Irish ensembles Chicago ever produced. They made no concessions to pop-Irish sensibilities, playing melodies with instrumentation that sounded by turns vigorous and ghostly. If there’s any hybridization going on at all, it’s with operatic and cabaret performance (which makes sense since O’Reilly and Tom Amandes both have theater backgrounds.)… O’Reilly can make you think you’ve never really heard Danny Boy.” –Chicago Reader
“I bought two copies of the CD one for my mom and one for my dad. They used to follow the band when they were younger and had the records; they were extremely happy to get the music on CD! Thanks!!!”
I’m so glad I found this!
“I have loved Jamie O’Reilly and the Rogues for a long time -I wore out the LP. I was delighted to find the songs I know so well on this CD and some great “new” tunes. The Ballad of the Rogues alone is worth the price of the CD.”
Jamie O’Reilly & the Rogues: A Collection of Rogues Recordings
“This is a great value! We wore out the tape – yes, tape – and were glad to find not just “Bangers and Ballads” but the best selections of two other albums on one CD! IF you know Tom Amandes from TV, listen to him here before his TV days started. His brother, Paul, adds his voice with lilt, joy, gusto or whatever the song calls for. And, you will be besotted by Jamie’s gorgeous voice. Her range, her playfulness, her singing caresses the music so you’ll want to listen to it again and again.”