I picked up some brilliant trad albums… at a MUJI (Japanese houseware store)
So where was the strangest place you found Irish Traditional Music?
Mine was while trying to find essential oils at a MUJI store. Now for those not familiar, this is a Japanese houseware store, a place where you can get kitchen utensils, stationary, bedding and other minimalist knick knacks for your home. While perusing and deciding between ylang ylang, lavender, or yuzu scents, on comes a harp playing the “ Luachrachán” and some other jigs. Out of curiousity, I asked the sales girl what playlist this was. She replied that it was MUJI’s cds and they had it for sale!
After much perusing and searching through their extensive world music album section, I came across 2 albums simply titled BGM 4 and 17. After a listen at home, I have to say these are some really wonderful tunes and songs, well recorded, and well curated. It’s the kind of albums a casual listener or a seasoned musician would enjoy. Looking inside the cd booklet, the artists are the likes of Damien Mullane, Jim Murray, Alan Kelly, Gerry O’Connor (banjo) and Liadan.
A bit of internet searching, apparently these are their best selling albums, and there is a BGM 25 which was recorded and released a couple of years back. It looks like all these albums are Japanese produced and recorded in Ireland (according to Google translate) At least according to this blogpost and the booklet notes:
Anyways, if anyone is interested in listening to them, you can stream the albums off Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube Music, or Prime. Look up MUJI BGM 4, 17, and 25 Ireland (25 is brilliant, IMO). Or pick them up at your local MUJI if you’re in range of one! There are also other world music such as French, Scottish, Finnish and Galician albums, and if they are as well produced and curated as the Irish ones, they should be a treat!