A name that will be recognised by many in the world of Irish traditional music, Maurice Lennon is an incredibly talented fiddle player and a gifted composer. With first-hand experience of his ability to compose stunning tunes during a regular Tuesday afternoon, I am in awe of todays featured artist.
The Lennon name is synonymous with great Irish traditional music in the Leitrim area as Maurice’s uncle Ben and his father Charlie are both exceptional fiddle players. Charlie Lennon received a lifetime achievement award at the TG4 Gradam Ceoil awards in 2011.
In the late 1970’s, Maurice was one of the founding members of the super group Stockton’s Wing. This group had six hit tracks and helped to reshape the Irish Traditional Music we play today.
Maurice Lennon has also shared stages around the world with Frank Sinatra, Liza Minnelli, Sammy Davis Jr., Stephan Grapelli, Michael Jackson, as well as performing and appearing in the superb Irish film, “The Field.
It’s surprising but Maurice Lennon has only one solo album to his name titled the Little ones. We’ll get to that in a second because although not a solo album, an album that he produced and stamped his identity on was the Brian Boru project back in 2008. This album gives us great tracks like ‘Tree of sorrows’ and the lovely song ‘My Reign Is Over’.
Coming back to his solo album titled The Little Ones, this is a beautiful arrangement from the beginning to the end and is the perfect illustration of Maurice’s playing. It’s not rushed, there’s great attention to detail and the production of everything on each track allows the lead instruments to have the room needed to really let the melody out. There is no over playing here. It’s obvious that this is a master playing at ease.
Unfortunately, Maurice Lennon’s website is off line but you can read a more detailed biog here.
I’ve mentioned the track Tree of sorrows. You can hear it on YouTube here.