Caoineadh Cine

Ancestral Keen

A new song from an upcoming collection, released in October 2020.

About ‘Caoineadh Cine'

I am releasing the second track of a new album of songs following the wonderful response to the first track Beannú - released eight weeks previous.

Both songs are a creative response to the ongoing current pandemic. As I was arranging and recording the keen, it was clear to me that it was emerging as a primal expression of collective loss, to give relief and transcendence. I sing it with great respect and gratitude to our ancestors, and in sorrow for all the resounding silences in our collective history that continue to affect an unexpressed grief and suffering.

Invoking the constancy and empathy of the elements and celestial planets at a time of sorrow is a feature of some traditional Irish laments, and which has influenced my work. At its core, Caoineadh Cine is a traditional keen from the singing of Cití Eoghain Éamoinn Ní Ghallchóir from Gaoth Dobhair c.1950, and is reimagined here as a new composition.

— Pádraigín Ní Uallacháin, October 2020


Pádraigín Ní Uallacháin: vocals

Dónal O'Connor: harmonium fiddle, viola

Recorded at RedBox Recording Studios, Belfast & produced by Dónal O'Connor.