Music Monday: Rankin Sisters Maritime Christmas

A couple week ago I went to The Barra MacNeil's Celtic Christmas concert. I waited ten years to see that show live and it was super excellent.

Last week I went to see The Rankin Sisters' Maritime Christmas concert - a show I've been waiting thirteen years to see! And it was fantastic! Who knew I'd get to see both within two weeks?!

Like The Barra MacNeil's Christmas CDs, I really love The Rankin Sisters Christmas CD, which came out in 1997. This was during the reign of The Rankin Family, right around the time celtic/east coast music became really popular. I was already a huge fan, thanks to this song:

Yeah, so I took a lot of teasing for my fantastic taste in music back in high school, good thing I'm a rock. Anyways, The Rankin Sisters rolled into town with their Christmas show and I sure wasn't going to miss it!

It was a great concert. They sang all my favourite Christmas songs from the CD, a bunch of new ones (new CD please!), and some classic Rankin Family ones. Joining the ladies was a pianist who also played the piano accordion, a bass and guitar player, drummer and two fiddlers. I recognized the fiddlers right away - Mairi Rankin (a cousin) and Wendy MacIssac (who also played banjo and mandolin). I'd seen these two back in the day at Folk Fest when they had a band called Beolach with Patrick Gillis and Mac Morin. They also had three local girls doing proper Irish step dancing with their fancy costumes, and all the ladies on stage step danced as well.

I'm not usually a fan of female singers, but I do love the Rankin's harmonies! The sisters also took turns talking to the crowd, telling stories, and generally make us laugh. It was such a lovely atmosphere. People were clapping and tapping their feet. Of course I was doing my usual chair dancing bit. And the girl sitting beside my friend was having a good ol'time singing and clapping. I love seeing people enjoy music!

These are my favourite two Rankin Sisters Christmas songs from the CD, and performed for a tv special back in the day:

The Rankins and Natalie MacMaster, good times. I hope the Rankin Sisters come back soon, with their Christmas show or with their brother Jimmy for another Rankin reunion. One can only hope, right?

You can find the Rankin Family at:
Rankins official
Rankins wikipedia
Rankins myspace