Storm in a Teacup                                                                          back to Norland Wind


Norland Wind - Storm in a Teacup
Harp Music and Song from the Celtic Northwest     

Laika Records 3510294.2

Kerstin Blodig - vocals, guitar, bouzouki, mandolin, bodhrán
Noel Duggan - vocals, guitar
Thomas Loefke - Celtic harp, vocals
Angelika Nielsen - fiddle, vocals
Henning Flintholm - keyboards, vocals

1. Mìle Marbhphaisg/ Mile Reel 4:15    
2. Arrivals 4:16
3. The Raven 6:16
4. Storm in a Teacup 3:21
5. Fannan na Cnoic 6:04
6. Open Boats 3:26
7. Bríd Óg Ní Mháille 4:33
8. I Need to Wake Up 4:04
9. Flintholm Five 3:50
10. Casadh an tSúgáin 4:46
11. Friends Across the Ocean 3:33
12. Norland Wind 5:01

1  Mìle Marbhphaisg / Mile Reel     trad. arr. Kerstin Blodig / Kerstin Blodig
Kerstin: A Scottish waulking song I learned while touring with Mary MacMaster some years ago. Waulking songs were sung on the Western Isles by women while waulking the wet tweed cloth.  Although the song  sounds happy, it’s actually quite serious: “A-thousand curses on love”. 
I arranged it for a rather off-beaty guitar and vocals, and wrote a tune to go with it. 
Guests: Hal Parfitt Murray: fiddle; Ian Melrose: vocals

Mìle marbhaisg air a‘ ghaol
O hi hi ri ri ri u
Asam fhin a thug e chlaoidh
Ho i u a ho hug o 
Ho i u a ho i u
Ho i u a ho hug o

Sgoilt e mo chridhe nam chom
Dh‘fhuasgail e‘m failt far mo chinn

Cha déid mise cha déid mi
Cha déid mi do mhac a mhaoir
No idir do mhac an t-saoir

2  Arrivals   Thomas Loefke,  Laika records and publishing
Thomas: Mykines is the most western isle of the Faroe Islands. In early Irish literature it was first mentioned in "The Voyage of Saint Brendan the Navigator" as far back as the 9th century. It is a bird paradise: towards the end of April every year ten thousands of puffins arrive on the shores within a matter of a few hours, an unforgettable experience! Dedicated to Katrina Johannesen and her family on wonderful Mykines, thank you for all your hospitality over the last couple of years! 

3  The Raven    Kerstin Blodig
Kerstin: The raven has always been an animal associated with a lot of myths. 
Sometimes we do things which are not good for us, and we know it already while in the process of doing them. Here I’m playing with the opposing forces of good and evil, attraction and fear, minor and major keys.
Guest: Ian Melrose: low whistle, vocals, electric guitar

On flies the raven, a bird on the wing
Don’t fear me my darling, good tidings I’ll bring
She takes me so lightly on the chill April breeze

A stóirín a ghrá, a stóirín mo chroí 
A stóirín a ghrá, a stóirín mo chroí
(my darling, my loved one)

Tightly she holds me ‘neath her velvet black wing
wrapped in her warm feathers, I don’t fear a thing
I sense her sharp claws, yet with her I flee

Fly on my raven, into your dark night
your heart-beat relentless, not minding my fright
so surely I am lost, shall I ever be free?

4  Storm in a Teacup    Ian Melrose
Kerstin: The title track written by my partner in crime (and Kelpie) for Thomas and me. 
Sometimes things we fuss or argue over aren’t  as important  as they seem.
Guests: Hal Parfitt Murray: fiddle; Ian Melrose: low whistle

5  Fanann na Cnoic (The Hills Will Stay)   Noel Duggan
Noel: Life is too short, make the most of it, if you can. Our father Hughie used to say "Imíonn na daoine, ach fannan na cnoic", which translates as "the people will go, but the mountains will remain forever". The sun rises, the moon appears at night, and the day returns again - the circle of life goes on and on. Generations are replaced by new generations. The song celebrates the Donegal Islands of Tory and Gola. Our grandmother Bridget Hudhi Eamonn Ruaidh (Bridget Doohan) was born on Tory, a place very close to our hearts. 
Guest: Jörg Surrey: rainmaker

Óró tiocfaidh 'n ghrian i dtús an tsamhraidh,
Óró 'na dhiaidh sin tiocfaidh an ghealach is an lá.
Beidh muid buartha is beidh muid brónach
ach saol na suairce bheas againn go deo.
Óró chuir mé fhéin mo lámh i mo phóca -  
ba ádh an tsaoil é; bhí briseadh le fáil.
Dhearc mé síos fá bhruach an chladaigh;
Bhí bád ag Simedín agus sheoil muid slán.
Ó hó hó ó agus hoho
o hoho is o
o hoho o agus oho
Imíonn na daoine ach fanann na cnoic.
Sheol muid siar, bhí muid cóngarach do Ghabhla.
Ansin ó thuaidh go dtí Toraigh na dtonn.
Bhí an fharraige ciúin agus an lá ag síneadh;
suaimheas intinne agus sólás trom.           
Óró tiocfaidh 'n ghrian i dtús an tsamhraidh,
Óró 'na dhiaidh sin tiocfáidh an ghealach is an lá.
Beidh muid buartha is beidh muid bronach
ach saol na suairce bheas againn go deo.
Óró … imeoidh an saol seo go deo


Oro the sun will return at the start of the summer,
And after that the moon and the day dawn.
And though we are troubled and though we are sad,
Happier times await up ahead.

Oro I put my hand in my pocket-
As luck had it I found (me) some coins.
I (then) looked down at the water’s edge
Simedín had a boat and we safely sailed on.
Ó hó hó ó agus hoho
o hoho is o
o hoho o agus oho
People move on but the hills remain.
We sailed off westwards and close by Gola
Then north from there out to Tory with its waves.
The sea was calm and the day was stretching;
- Peace of mind and deepest ease.
Oro the sun will return at the start of the summer,
And after that the moon and the day (dawn).
And though we are troubled and though we are sad, 
happier times await up ahead

This life will go on forever

6  Open Boats  Thomas Loefke, Laika records and publishing
Thomas: Will we be lucky today? The weather may be good enough for us, to jump into the open boats, to sail into the cave, and play our music - with every note bouncing back from the cave walls and mingling with the sound of the sea... 

7  Bríd Óg Ní Mháille (Young Bridget O‘ Malley)    trad. arr. Kerstin Blodig
Noel: Probably the saddest song we have in Ireland. The unknown author is left behind broken-hearted when his secret love Bríd marries someone else. A traditional song with roots in Donegal and Mayo.

Is a Bhríd Óg Ní Mháille is tú d‘fhag mo chroí cráite
‘S chuir tú arraingeacha‘n bháis trí cheartlár mo chroí;
Tá na céadta fear i ngrá le d‘éadan ciúin náireach
‘S go dtug tú barr breáthacht‘ ar Thír Oirgheall‘ más fíor.

Níl ní ar bith is áille ná an ghealach os cionn an tsáile.
Nó bláth bán na n-airne bhíos ag fás ar an draighean;
Ó siúd mar a bhíos mo ghrása níos trilsí le breáthacht,
Béilín meala na háilleacht‘ nach ndearna riamh claon.

Is buachaill deas óg mé ‘tá ‘triall chun mo phósta.
‘S ní buan i bhfad beo mé mura bhfaighe mé mo mhian;
A chuisle‘s a stóirín déan réidh agus bhí romhamsa
Ceann deireannach den Domhnach ar Bhóithrín Dhroim Sliabh.

Is tuirseach ‘s brónach a chaithimse an Domhnach
Mo hata ‘mo dhorn ‘s mé ag ag osnail go trom
‘S mé ag smaointiú ar na bóithre a bhíos mo ghrá  ag siúl ann
‘Sí  ag fear eile pósta agus gan í bheith liom.

Young Bríd (Bridget) O’Malley, you have tormented my heart
And you put pangs of death through the core of my heart.
Hundreds of men love your quiet bashful face
And you’re the fairest of all in Oriel, if what’s said is true.
There’s nothing that’s nicer than the moon o’er the sea
Or the white blossom of the sloe as it grows on the blackthorn
Oh, such is my love, and even more dazzling with beauty.
The sweet mouth of honey which ne’er told a lie.
I’m a fine young man, of marriageable age 
But I’ll not live for long if I don’t get my love.
My treasure and joy, get ready and await me
Late on next Sunday on theroad to Drumcliff.
It’s weary and sad that I now spend my Sundays,
My hat in my hand as I sigh oh so deep
And I look o’er the roadways where my loved one she passes 
And she to another man married, instead of to me. 

8  I Need to Wake Up   Melissa Etheridge, arr. Kerstin Blodig, MLI
Kerstin: Originally written for Al Gore’s documentary “An Inconvenient Truth”, I think this is one of the best songs written about global warming ever! 
An encouraging reassurance that starting to take action on a personal level DOES help - you are not alone, and the more people we have setting an example, the better things will get!
I’ve arranged the song for a folk band, featuring a little reel in the middle.
Guest: Ian Melrose: low whistle, vocals

9  Flintholm Five   Henning Flintholm
Henning: The first tune I wrote for the band. A song in 5/4 and 10/8 time.
Guest:  Afra Mussawisade: darbuka, additional percussion

10  Casadh an tSúgáin (Twisting of the Rope)   trad. arr. Kerstin Blodig / Noel Duggan
Noel: The young man visits the girl he wants to marry. Her grandmother does not really like him. She makes him twist a hay rope, and while he is twisting and twisting, he is backing further and further away from the girl he loves, out of the room, out of the house, into the yard. Then the grandmother cuts the rope, leaving him outside.
Kerstin: Clever granny!

A Rí na bhfeart cad do chas ins a‘ dúthaigh seo mé?
‘S gur mó cailín deas  a gheobhainn im dhúthaigín beag féin.
Gur casadh mé isteach mar a raibh searc agus grá geal mo chléibh,
‘S chuir an tseanbhean amach mé ag casadh an tsúgáinín féir.

Má bhíonn tú liúm bhí liúm, a stóirín mo chroí,
Má bhíonn tú liúm bhí liúm, ós comhair an tsaoil,
Má bhíonn tú liúm bhí liúm, gach orlach de d‘chroí,
‘Sé mo lom go fann nach liúm Dé Domhnaigh thú mar mhnaoi.

Tá mo cheannsa liath le bliain is ní le críonnacht é,
Ní bheathaíd na bréthre na bráithre pé sa domhan scéal é;
Is táim  i d‘ dhiaidh le bliain is gan fáil agam ort féin,
‘S gur geall le fia mé ‘r shliabh go mbeadh gáir con ‘na dhiaidh.

If you'll be mine oh mine
Every inch of your heart be mine
If you 'll be mine oh mine
I'd plough, I'd toil, I'd sow the seeds into the soil if you were mine oh mine
I'd plough, I'd toil, I'd sow the seeds into the soil
I'd shoe the maddest horse if you were mine oh mine...

Do threabhfainn, d‘fhuirsinn, chuirfinn síol ins a‘ chré,
‘S do dhéanfainn obair shocair, álainn, mhín, réidh,
Do chuirfinn crú fén each is mire shiúil riamh ar féar,
Is ná héalódh bean le fear ná déanfadh san féin.


Oh King of great deeds, whatever brought me to this place
When there’s plenty fair maidens in my own place back home?
I happened to go to where my own true love was
But the old lady sent me out as I twisted the rope of hay
If you are mine, be mine my dear
If you are mine, be mine in front of the whole wide world
If you are mine, be mine with every millimeter of your heart  
It’s my great pity that you’re not to be my wife next Sunday.
My head of hair is turning grey, but it’s not because I’m old.
It’s said that words alone won’t feed the mouths of the clergy.
I have been courting you for a year now but to no avail
And now I’m worn out like a deer chased through the hills by hounds. 
I would plough, harrow and sow seed in the soil
I’d do any labour to the highest standards
I’d put a shoe on the wildest steed that ever walked on grass;
Girls, don’t elope with a man unless he can achieve these tasks.

11  Friends Across the Ocean    Thomas Loefke,  Laika records and publishing
Thomas:  Written in magical Tofino on Vancouver Island after a tour in Canada. Dedicated to Hannah Alkire and Joe Scott. 
Guest: Ian Melrose: low whistle

12  Norland Wind   m: Jim Reid, w: Violet Jacob, arr. Kerstin Blodig / Ian Melrose, Springthyme Music
Kerstin: Thomas and I named our duo after the song twenty years ago. A beautiful poem of a Scotsman in exile, having a conversation with the wind, and longing for the North. And I can relate to it so very well. Sung in Scots, it’s already so close to Norwegian. Still one of my favourites after all these years, I’d like to dedicate it to my late Scottish father-in-law.
Guest: Ian Melrose: low whistle

Tell me what was on yer road, ye roarin Norland wind
As ye come blawin frae the land that's never frae ma mind
Ma feet they traivel England but I'm deein for the North
Ma man, I saw the siller tides rin up the Firth o Forth
Aye wind, I ken them weel eneuch, and fine they fall and rise
And fain I'd feel the creepin mist on yonder shore that lies
But tell me as ye pass them by, what saw ye on your way
Ma man, I rocked the rovin’ gulls that sail abin the Tay
But saw ye naethin leein wind afore ye come tae Fife
There's muckle lyin 'yont the Tay that's mair tae me nor life
Ma man, I swept the Angus braes that ye hivna trod for years
Oh wind, forgie a hameless loon that canna see for tears
Far abin the Angus straths I saw the wild geese flee
A lang, lang skein o beatin wings wi their heids toward the sea
And aye their roaring voices trailed ahint them on the air
Oh wind, hae mercy, haud your wheesht for I daurna listen mair
Violet Jacob

Kerstin plays a Gibson J-60 guitar (bone crusher)
Thomas plays a harp made by Jan Muyllaert

special thanks to:
Jörg Surrey, Ian Melrose, Hal Parfitt Murray, Afra Mussawade, Stephan Röhl, Walter Blodig
and Lille Mino, Christiane Stanko, Pádraig Duggan, Maeve MacKinnon, Máire Breatnach,
Juliana Mc Corrison, Kristian Blak, Manfred Leuchter, Ulli Hetscher, Eckehard Berndt,
Manfred Pollert, Peter Cronemeyer and Reuben Ó Conluain.

produced by Kerstin Blodig 

recorded, edited, mixed and mastered by Jörg Surrey
at Surrealis Sounds @ Teldex Studios Berlin
various additional guitars by Kerstin recorded by Ian Melrose at Due Leone
harp recorded by Thomas Loefke
keyboards recorded by Henning Flintholm

landscape photography: Thomas Loefke
band photography: Stephan Röhl
booklet-artwork: Manfred Pollert

translations: Reuben Ó Conluain
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