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CD 1  -  'The Priests'


The Priests' eponymously-titled debut album was produced by Mike Hedges and Sally Herbert and became a worldwide commercial success, ranking in the Top Ten in many countries. It was released in Ireland in November 2008 by Epic Records. It was subsequently released worldwide in over forty countries,  preceded by an ITV documentary as well as PBS special in the United States.

In December 2008 The Priests set a new Guinness World Record for 'Fastest-selling debut for a classical act'. The debut album turned seven times Platinum in Ireland, and Platinum in UK, Sweden, Norway as well as going Gold in New Zealand, Canada and Spain.

In the 21 March 09 issue of The Tablet, it was stated that the album sold more than 1 million copies in Ireland alone.


Track Listings and Samples

Ave Maria (Schubert)

The Priests: "A favourite hymn first sung to us by our mothers. Fr Eugene sang it to celebrate his ordination as a Deacon in Rome and it remains a huge favourite of all us and our congregations, especially at weddings."


Mit Würd' und Hoheit Angetan (Haydn)

The Priests: "A melodic and simple Haydn aria with a text which sings out the glory of God's creation and how man and woman became living beautiful souls made in the image and likeness of God. Wonderful thoughts and wonderful music!"


Panis Angelicus (Franck)

The Priests: "The words are from a hymn by St Thomas Aquinas with 19th century music written by Caesar Frank. It is a truly inspirational composition which we have sung since boyhood as a solo, duet and recently as a trio."


Irish Blessing (Chilcott)

The Priests: "A wonderful part of our rich Celtic tradition. We have included this in the album not to say goodbye as such, but to say 'until we meet again'."


Benedictus (Arwyn)

The Priests: "The words of the Benedictus come from the Matthew's Gospel in which Jesus' entry into Jerusalem is described. We fell in love with the music immediately when we first saw it and couldn't wait to sing it."


Plegaria (Alvarez)

The Priests: "Msgr. Pablo Colino, who directs the choir on this album, introduced us to this gorgeous Spanish song of devotion. The song reminds us that love of God involves love of neighbour and love of one's country and culture."


Pie Jesu (Webber)

The Priests: "'Grant them everlasting rest' are the words from the ancient funeral liturgy which are included in this beautiful requiem mass. We have chosen Andrew Lloyd Webber's wonderful, melodic and ethereal version of this ancient prayer which touches our souls."


Hacia Belen (Span. Traditional)

The Priests: "The stable in Bethlehem, a delivery of chocolate, a sombrero and some unexpected visitors all appear this Spanish carol sung by children and adults throughout the year. It's just fun from beginning to end… you'll all love the tongue-twisting chorus."


Abide With Me (Monk)

The Priests: "This hymn was written by Henry Lyte in 1847 and was a favourite of King George IV and Mahatma Ghandi. It was played at the weddings of King George VI and that of his daughter, the princess Elizabeth, now Queen Elizabeth II."


Ag Criost An Siol (O'Riada)

The Priests: "A wonderful celebratory piece by Ireland's master musician Sean O'Riada who wrote the words and the music. We have sung this song since we were boys in short trousers and its quintessentially Celtic tone appeals to young and old alike."


Domine Fili Unigenite (Vivaldi)

The Priests: "From Vivaldi's Gloria, this is one of his most energetic and exciting movements. It is special to us because Vivaldi was also a priest for whom music was part of his mission. He devoted much of his talent to writing sacred music for Church services in Venice."


O Holy Night (Adam)

The Priests: "Christmas is never Christmas without singing 'O Holy Night'. We all sang this Christmas song as boys at St MacNissi's College, Garron Tower and for the patients of the Waveney Hospital in Ballymena whom we visited at Christmas time."


Ecce Sacerdos (Elgar)

The Priests: "This is a majestic choral piece by Edward Elgar which all three of us took part in singing with St Peter's Cathedral Choir, Belfast at the Ordination of our new Bishop, No
ël Treanor, in June 2008."


Be Still My Soul (Sibelius)

The Priests: "By Sibelius from Finlandia; we find this both inspirational and consoling. It was a favourite of Eric Liddell, the athlete immortalised in the film Chariots of Fire for refusing to run on a Sunday and who later became a missionary."


Read more

1. Album Review "The Priests"
20 Feb 2009  -  Channel 24, South Africa

2. CD-Review "The Priests"
29 Mar 2009  -  Love2Learn, Catholic Homeschoolers, USA


"Music enters the heart, it opens us to others, and brings joy.
Music reaches everyone, believers and non-believers alike,
and that must be our main objective: bringing people closer together!"
Fr David

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