Listeners' comments from Amazon

  • CDGaughan
    • Larry L. Looney, Austin, Texas, May 8, 2001
      This early album by Dick Gaughan contains some of his best work, and is a nice mixture of his self-penned political songs and more traditional selections, including works by Robert Burns as well as songs dealing with the work and plight of coal miners, a cause near and dear to his heart (He released an entire album of mining-related songs to benefit the miners strike in the UK during the Thatcher years). Gaughan is (as usual) in fine voice here, and his guitar work shines nicely as well. 'Bonnie Jeannie o' Bethelnie' is a classic example of the sheer beauty of traditional Scots song. This album is a classic of the Scottish folk revival -- it's nice to know that it's still available. Those who are interested should also seek out his 'Handful of Earth' album -- that and 'A different kind of love song' are must-haves for anyone who enjoys his work.
    • Unnamed listener, Quebec, Canada, April 20, 2001
      This is a pretty good Gaughan album. I would recommend this to anyone who is into old Scottish and North of England folks songs. His dialect is pretty strong so I imagine anyone from North America could have trouble understanding what he's talking about. There are some pretty interesting tales in here so its worth perservering. If you havent heard Dick Gaughan before I would recommend you buy Handful of Earth first.
  • CDHandful of Earth
    • Erik Kingston, Boise, Idaho, July 16 1998
      Dick Gaughan is one of Scotland's greatest treasures, with a voice and delivery that always ring true and a brilliant sense of musicianship. I first saw him in concert in the '80s in Salt Lake City, UT. "Handful of Earth" should be required listening for any working person with half an ear; these are timeless and earthy songs of workers everywhere. As a former professional musician and concert promoter, I put Dick Gaughan on my top ten list of all-time favorite musicians.
    • unnamed listener, August 2 1998
      As soulful and moving as any music I've heard. As a fan of all kinds of music from folk to punk, I've learned that the common denominator in all the music I like is genuine feeling. Dick Gaughan's voice and guitar playing are as genuine and beautifully soulful as anything I've heard. He's also very funny in concert, by the way.
    • unnamed listener, December 7 1998
      I first heard Dick Gaughan in an upper room in a tiny North London pub in 1985. It was hot and dark in that little room, packed full of a hushed crowd. All those people were in on a secret: Dick Gaughan. I've never forgotten the spare beauty of that night. Worker's songs, like colliary bands, are an acquired taste for Americans. I can't think of a better introduction not only to traditional agit-prop music, but to the astonishing beauty of the celtic music sensibility than Dick Gaughan, and this album in particular. He can do things with a guitar that stretch the instrument immensely. In his hands, it's a fiddle, sometimes a pipe, but always sparklingly clear. His voice is stern and honest. This is beautiful work, his Now Westlin Winds and Workers Song in particular. A good introduction to the often difficult celtic ear.
    • unnamed listener from New Jersey, April 5 1999
      Although "Lads o' the Fair" from Parallel Lines is my favorite song by Gaughan (and one of my all-time favorites), this whole album is nothing short of exquisite. Dick Gaughan's unique voice and guitar style give an added dimension to some of the finest Celtic tunes around. I rate this my favorite complete Celtic album; not a bum song on it (sort of like Carole King's Tapestry). If you could only have one Celtic album (and that would be a shame), this should be it.
    • unnamed listener from London, December 30 1999
      Buy it just for "World turned upside down". If you like "workers songs" this is for you. Powerful emotive lyrics in a folk style.
    • unnamed listener from Wales, January 23 2000
      I've had a crackly second-hand recording of this album since my teens, but I can't bear the idea of losing it - I need it on CD as well! Dick Gaughan's vocals are emotive, at times tender and at other times harsh. The album mixes songs with a strong political conscience with paens to home, wherever that may be. My favourite songs are 'The Snows they melt the soonest' and 'Both sides of the Tweed'. To add some objectivity, I have a friend who says that Dick's voice is like 'a pig in distress', she's wrong of course.
    • unnamed listener from New York City, April 21 2000
      I'm a big fan of folk and folk-rock and I've never heard a better album than this one. Its blend of time-tested traditional material and stunning contemporary songs is seamless and breathtaking. Dick's version of "Song for Ireland" outshines Mary Black's and her version is great. The other songs are all equally powerful and the whole collection hangs together beautifully. If you prefer the traditional stuff, "No More Forever" and "True and Bold" are right up with this album in terms of consistent excellence. Unfortunately, they're also a little hard to find these days.
    • unnamed listener from Spain, June 16 2000
      I decided to buy this cd just for listening to "World Turned Upside Down" (full of passion song with incredible lyrics) but after listening to all the songs I can say I have become a great fan of Gaughan! I highly recommend this cd: I am sure anybody who likes folk music (specially british folk) will love it. Buy it and enjoy it!
  • CDParallel Lines
    • unnamed listener from New Jersey, April 5 1999
      We've owned the LP version of this for years, and I'm DELIGHTED that it's finally available on CD. Both Gaughan and Irvine are fine singers and musicians with distinctive styles and voices. But Dick Gaughan's "Lads O The Fair" remains one of my all-time favorite songs (maybe tied with Bruce Cockburn's "Wondering Where the Lions Are" for #1). Outstanding. If you're a Celtic music fan of any sort, get this CD. Now.
    • unnamed listener from NYC, May 25 1999
      This is a lovely collection of songs that should be enjoyable for any fan of Celtic music. And after hearing Dick Gaughan's "Flowers of the Forest", you'll be sold on him forever. It's simply one of the most beautiful, haunting pieces of music I've ever heard.
  • CDA Different Kind of Love Song
    • Larry L. Looney, Austin, Texas, May 8, 2001
      This fine album from 1983 showcases Dick Gaughan's songwriting and political conscience, as well as some fine writing by others. A little more 'electric' than his earlier releases, the sound and arrangements should come as no surprise to those familiar with his fine, earlier work with the band Five Hand Reel (O that their work was available today on cd...!!!)Every song on this cd is a strong one -- and this release, thanks to the good folks at Appleseed, contains two bonus tracks, including Leon Rosselson's wonderful tribute to the Diggers, 'World turned upside-down'. Also present here is another Rosselson classic, 'Stand up for Judas'. The title track sums up Gaughan's philosophy of song very nicely -- entertainment is all well and good, but these are songs to shake the listener's mind and soul, to make them think about their world and what they can do to make it a better place. The pairing of 'Prisoner 562'/'Song of choice' drives home the lesson of the evil that mankind is capable of, both by acting directly and by standing idly by, choosing to do nothing in its face. 'The Father's Song' is one of the most poignant expressions of a parent's wish for a better world for his child that I have ever heard. 'Think again' holds the stupidity of the cold war mentality up in society's face. And only Dick Gaughan could take Joe South's 60s anthem 'Games people play' and make it meaningful for the present-day listener.This album can entertain, but it can also make you angry enough to ask yourself, 'What can I do...?'
    • (This next one has to be one of my all-time favourite reviews. I haven't altered a word of it, not even to correct the typos. -- DG)
      unnamed listener from Independence, MO USA, March 4, 2002
      Dick Gaughan is a wonderful singer. I bought this after hearing his Song for Ireland on a sampler. What an amazing voice! But these songs are so lame, so chock-full of mis-guided and pompous sensitivity, that listening to that voice mouthing these words is a classic case of cognitive dissonance. Games People Play works astonishing performace that is worth one of these stars all by itself.But Stand Up for Judas, in a world where religions are killing right now for religion, sounds breathtakingly silly (I admit, I'm a Christain, but turning your pal into the hated authorites to get him to act is hard to comprehend under any circumstances). And calling Reagan a broken-down actor is just dumb. People still wish Carter had won that election--geez, even I voted for him--but Carter and his thought were bad for this country.Those who prefer a Socialist state are free to have them, but the voters who are voting with their feet are choosing America in overwhelming numbers. Dick Gaughan doesn't get it. And he seems angry that anyone would choose something so obviously decadent and foul.
  • CDTrue and Bold
    • unnamed listener from New York City, March 17 2000
      This is as lovely, haunting and beautiful as any folk music I've heard. The songs are presented with the kind of compassion and empathy only a man like Gaughan could draw up. He knows these people, he admires them and he know they deserve respect and gratitude--not pity or dismissal. The bottom line, though, is that these songs are simply heartwrenchingly lovely and soulful. One listen to songs like "Collier Laddie" and you'll be as sold as I am on the beauty and dignity that can come from hard lives.
  • CDSail On
    • unnamed listener from Woodstock MD, Sep 28 1999
      If I were stranded on a desert island with only my CD player, this is one of the CD's I would have to have with me. With everything from traditional ("Freedom Come All Ye") to rock ("No Cause for Alarm") to the Rolling Stones ("Ruby Tuesday"), Gaughan shines on this one! And for everyone, like me, who ever needed encouragement at a very low time in their life, "Sail On" is the one song you need to hear and pay heed to.
  • CDRedwood Cathedral
    • unnamed listener from Kansas, Oct 16 1998
      Dick Gaughan has once again provided the world with a powerful, moving, and inspiring collection. His ability to roar with urgency and instantly slide to a passionate whisper is sure to raise gooseflesh on the arms of his listeners. He remains foremost among singers and guitarists of any genre.

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