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Artist: The Gothard Sisters
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The EvO:R review section features reviews from various independent musicians that
submit material for our consideration.
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The EvO:R CD Review Team
Genre: Traditional Celtic Folk Music
Rating: 9 out of 10 stars
Artist Website: Gothard Sisters Website
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Visual Media: YouTube Channel
Reviewed by: Charles Harrelson
Edited by: Charles Harrelson
Review Comments: firstname.lastname@example.org
is an accomplished Irish dancer, having placed repeatedly in Open Championship, earning 5th and 4th at
the Western Region Oireachtas, 20th at the North American National Championships and earning the elusive recall at the
2008 World Championships of Irish dance in Philadelphia. Willow, who was homeschooled, has been playing classical
violin since the age of 5 and has performed in orchestras and chamber music ensembles. In 2010 she also started to play the mandolin and continues to expand her musical knowledge, as reflected in her growing compositions and original Celtic tunes and melodies. Willow sews every single costume that the Gothard Sisters wear in their live shows and videos by hand so they are completely unique.
The Gothard Sisters have recorded seven CDs, beginning with their Christmas release in 2006 ("And to All a Good Night,")
and progressing to their most recent original and Celtic album, "Compass" in August, 2013, and their latest Christmas album,
"Christmas," which has gained some radio airplay and includes a well-loved version of "Little Drummer Boy," (renamed "Little
Drummer Girl") which was included on a recent Putumayo World Music compilation album of unique Celtic Christmas music arrangements.
Their 2011 album, Story Girl, has already gathered some awards of its own, including celticradio.net's "Album of the Year" for 2011.
The contest was voted on by members of the internet radio site and through 15,000 votes first place in the Jigs and Reels category
was awarded to "The Three Coins," which was written by Willow Gothard. Meanwhile, their latest release, "Compass" (2013) is
a new level of recording and musical composition for the sisters, with six original songs using a wide variety of instruments
and styles and a much deeper compositional style.
Greta Gothard started playing violin when she was 5 years old by studying the Suzuki method for classical violin.
Greta was home-schooled through high school. She was an active member of the Seattle Youth Symphonies for over 10
years, holding leadership positions in the Junior and youth orchestras.
Greta is also an Open championship level Irish dancer and 3-time World qualifier in the Western region, placing 8th
and 9th at the Oireachtas. In 2007, she started playing guitar to expand her musical knowledge, and has since become
fascinated by Celtic music played in a variety of different ways. Greta enjoys arranging music, composing, teaching,
running websites, studying videography and video editing, and performing regularly as part of her active performance
group, the Gothard Sisters, with her sisters Willow and Solana.
Solana Gothard was the youngest dancer from the Pacific Northwest ever to qualify for the World Championships of
Irish dancing when she placed 6th at the Western Region Oireachtas in 2006. She was 11 years old at the time. Solana,
who is homeschooled and mostly self-taught, has always been fond of words and song, and is the lead singer for the
Gothard Sisters. Her strong, sweet vocals are uniquely clean and pure. Solana has also played classical violin since
she was 3 years old, which is also around the same time that she started Irish dance lessons. She has recently
learned how to play the bodhran and other rhythm and percussion instruments to add to the sound variety in the Gothard Sisters'
live shows. Solana continues to study classical violin with the Gothard Sisters' longtime violin teacher and mentor,
Traditional Celtic Folk music is not music known for breaking new ground and exploring new ideas. It's a tried and true music style which hasn't
seen many changes in the past 100 years. Still the Gothard Sisters take us back to a time when the world seemed to be a simpler place.
The music was not about Friday night parties, getting stoned hooking up with some nameless person. The music was about hard work, dedication to friends and family.
Most of all, it was a celebration of what is good in all of us. It doesn't hurt that every one of the sisters has incredible musical talents.
This CD doesn't break any new ground or uncover any new musical directions for the Celtic Folk format. The songs sound about the same
today as they would have 200 years ago with the obvious exception of the added acoustic guitar into the mix. The girls instrumentation is second to none
and the vocals and vocal harmonies are impecable. There are no fillers on this CD. Every song has a place and a purpose and the CD is best listened to
as a whole piece of work. Please don't listen with shuffle play. Listen to how each song sets up the next. The pacing is perfect.
Water Is Wide
Call and the Answer
Fairy Dance Jig
The Whistling Gypsy Rover
A Song for Lark
Feast of the Elven King
Flying Sails /
This CD sat on my desk for 6 months. I listened to a couple songs every week but never really feel in love with the genre. Once I took a long
trip in my car and popped the CD in for an extended listen I was extremely impressed with the level of performance delivered these three
talented ladies. The CD was recorded at a level typically researved for major label artist's. The instruments jump out of the speakers and transend the listener
into a journey of pristine sounds and amazing vocals. This is one of 2013's best independent artist CD's and will be included in our Best of 2013 award
The Gothard Sisters are three sisters from the Pacific Northwest. They are all violinists, as well as
championship Irish dancers, having won awards in America as well as Ireland. Greta, Willow and Solana
originally started as an Irish dance group, then added their violins and now have guitar, bodhran
and voice to add to their repertoire. They are based on the Pacific coast, but regularly tour all over the US.
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