CD Review

"Celtic Guitar" by Jim Tozier, Solid Air Records

Roots music depends on your perspective. In the US, it means blues and the songs of the 1930's that told the tales of the Great Depression. Cross "the pond", and roots music in the UK goes back hundreds of years. The common thread is that roots music has been saved from extinction and is kept alive through largely "oral traditions" of passing the music down to succeeding generations one song at a time, one musician at a time.

The best of the current guitarists keeping the Celtic tradition is Jim Tozier. Jim's debut CD, Castlerea, established him as one of the most eloquent Celtic guitarists in the world. On his new CD, Celtic Guitar, Jim has done that which is the hallmark of genius by becoming more intricate and more subtle at the same time.

"Celtic Guitar" stands shoulder-to-shoulder with the great, universally known, Celtic guitarists of our time. If you are a fan of Celtic guitar, you either know who Jim is or you will know who Jim is.

Jim's 2nd CD clocks in with a very generous 21 songs; traditional Iris, traditional Scottish, 5 tributes to O'Carolan and 3 original compositions. It would be difficult to imagine spending a more pleasant hour or so than with Jim's "Celtic Guitar" playing in the background.

The 'net not only gives musicians the ability to be heard, it also gives musicians the opportunity to get behind new and deserving artists. Fans of Celtic guitar owe it to themselves to listen to Jim and decide for themselves whether his playing deserves the praise that it has been receiving. For my precious listening time, Jim's music has a very deserving placed at the front of the line. Give "Celtic Guitar" a listen--he could well wind up at the front of your listening line too!