As a founding member of FairPlé – the campaign for gender equality in traditional and folk music – Pauline Scanlon has always had a particular focus on the role of women in society as part of her creative impulse as well as in her activism. Her new album, The Unquiet, released last month, leans on traditional foundations, but within a modern contemporary context.
The Unquiet is her third collaboration with producer, John Reynolds. “All my life as a singer, I have been drawn to old songs. In them I find a solidarity with the ghosts of people I have never met and yet share fragments of feelings with,” explains Pauline. “This album is based on the life of my late mother, Eileen Scanlon, and her contemporaries in Irish society. The songs have a resonance and a purpose in reflecting her lived experience and that of modern-era women in Ireland, through my perspective.’
Scanlon is also a member of the acclaimed Atlantic Arc Orchestra project, led by Donal Lunny, and featuring master musicians including piper and singer, Jarlath Henderson, fiddler Tara Breen and Sharon Howley of the Kilfenora Céili Band. Another important string to her misucal bow in the last couple of years has been her collaboration with the Galway-based band,
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