NPR distributes The Thistle & Shamrock®, a weekly radio program of music from Celtic roots in Europe and North America, to member stations throughout the U.S. Produced and hosted by Fiona Ritchie, the radio show has attracted many exclusive contributions though the years, including NPR’s first mp3 music download, live festival recordings, and world premiere performances.

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“The Thistle & Shamrock® has become a soundtrack for the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans. She instinctively knows what connects with her listeners.”
— Archie Fisher, Scottish folksinger and songwriter

Wayfaring Strangers - the Musical Voyage from Scotland and Ulster to Appalachia

"essential... a gorgeous book, including a CD of various artists’ renditions of the songs whose origins the authors so beautifully recount” ~ New York Times

In Wayfaring Strangers, Fiona Ritchie and Doug Orr guide readers on a musical voyage across oceans, linking people and songs through centuries of adaptation and change. From ancient ballads at the heart of the tradition to instruments that express this dynamic music, Ritchie and Orr chronicle the details of an epic journey. Enriched by the insights of key contributors to the living tradition on both sides of the Atlantic, this abundantly illustrated volume includes a CD featuring 20 songs by musicians profiled in the book, including Dolly Parton who contributed the Foreword.

The authors have followed their own Wayfarers’ book trail from Edinburgh to Belfast, Charlotte to Chapel Hill, Asheville to Nashville. Next stop: New York City as part of Carnegie Hall’s Migrations: the Making of America Festival. Check back for more updates on Wayfaring Strangers events.

Authors Fiona Ritchie and Doug Orr with    Little Windows    (Julee Glaub and Mark Weems) in Charlotte, NC.    Photo by Daniel Coston.

Authors Fiona Ritchie and Doug Orr with Little Windows (Julee Glaub and Mark Weems) in Charlotte, NC.
Photo by Daniel Coston.

Links to book and CD outlets

Edinburgh International Book Festival, 2015

Edinburgh International Book Festival, 2015

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