Lasairfhíona (pronounced Lah-sah-reena) is a singer/songwriter deeply
rooted in the sean-nós singing style of her home on Inishere, Aran Islands
in the West of Ireland, and equally, her innovative approach to Irish music
and her new slant on traditional singing makes her endeavors more appealing.
The result is a magical mosaic of sound, as refreshing and as unpredictable as a
showery day inside in Aran. A graduate in Celtic Studies from Trinity College Dublin,
a broad range of contemporary music has influenced her singing.
Her debut album An Raicín Álainn (pronounced An Rackeen Ah-lyn),
launched in 2002 at the Festival Interceltique in Lorient, Brittany
generated a very favourable response in Ireland and abroad. It was selected
by Hot Press music magazine as one of the best folk albums of 2002 and
described by fRoots magazine as "one of the most sumptous traditional
albums to have emerged for some time."
Lasairfhíona was the subject of a special television documentary on
Léargas, RTÉ that was directed by Moira Sweeney in 2002. She sang
on Sinéad O’ Connor’s DVD, Goodnight, Thank You, You’ve Been A Lovely
Audience in 2002 and took part in many television and radio programmes
“Her cheerful sincerity, her gentle self-deprecation and, most
importantly, her peerless talent."
The Sunday Times
She has performed in venues around the country, including the National
Concert Hall in Dublin, Town Hall Theatre in Galway and at the Montreux
Jazz Festival in Switzerland. Her song Dragonfly, set to music by Lasairfhíona
and Hector Zazou was on the soundtrack for the DVD Play Magazine, which
showcased the fashion collection for Fall/Winter 2004/2005 of the designers
Prada, Issey Miyake, Manolo Blahnik and Jimmy Chou.
Lasairfhíona’s singing featured on a compilation album of the best
emerging Irish music that was produced by the Department of Arts,
Sport and Tourism, Ireland and The Music Board of Ireland to mark the
Irish presidency of the European Union 2004. Her second solo album
released in 2005 is called Flame of Wine, a literal translation of her own
name in Irish. The album was co-produced by Máire Breatnach, who also
provides some beautiful musical accompaniment along with talented
musicians Mary Bergin, Johnny McDonagh, Bill Shanley and singer
MacDara Ó Conaola.
Here Lasairfhíona conjures up a stirring mixture of song and music in
her own individual style, including newly composed songs in Irish and
English. A talent well recognized, she was nominated in 2005 for a
prestigious Meteor award in Ireland.
“Ní Chonaola rises to the challenge on this beautifully paced album which
is varied enough to keep the most jaded listener hooked, from obscure
local finds like ‘An tAmhrán Bréagach’ to the classic ‘big song’ ‘An Raibh Tú
ar an gCarraig’ to two superb originals: the gentle ballad ‘Galleon’ (one of
two songs in English) and the title track, a wordless piece of freewheeling
mouth music that Ní Chonaola describes as her ‘signature tune’.”
-9/10 HotPress Music Magazine
Lasairfhíona featured on a track entitled The Mighty Dancer (2007)
that she co-wrote and sang on her brother MacDara’s debut album,
The Love Token
Her singing can be heard on IBM's new Porto Media web documentary called
Stories of Innovation.
"Lasairfhíona creates many different moods in these songs: playful, beguiling,
mournful, seductive, innocent, direct, oblique. But there's something else here,
something indefinable... a blessing... like a word that was lost, its sound and
meaning restored to us again."