Top Fifty 31: Tír na nÓg – A Tear and a Smile, 1972

[Originally posted in May 2011, the first in this list, and out of sequence here, as are all in this re-posting]


A Tear and a Smile is the Dublin duo’s second album, released in 1972, and is a folk gem, full of Irish lilt in the singing and fine guitar pluck and strum. The self-penned songs are gentle, earnest offerings – melodic, occasional harmony and simply sweet lyrically – and this album is indelibly mixed into the tiedye of my growing up at the time.

Before forming in Dublin, Leo O’Kelly came from Carlow and Sonny Condell from Newtownmountkennedy. Though their next album and later releases included more electrification, this is pure acoustic folk.

Wonderful songs are

Down Day
The Same Thing Happened

So Freely


Lady Ocean

Goodbye My Love

Two White Horses

That’s 7 of the 10 and I am nitpicking the great from the good.

This post is the first in my new venture to account for my top 50 albums. I have no idea if I can confine myself to such a number but that’s the challenge and discipline. Once I have accounted for the 50, I will then rank them. That’ll be interesting.

Then it’s the next 50…..

And I’m not the first nor the last to start this kind of paradoxically perpetual task.

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