This recording for me has been a long time coming. The music and arrangements have been from three different phases of my playing over the last decade. They have been heard, collected, practiced, and recorded here to take a snapshot. When creating and recording music in this day and age one can be faced with many different avenues and strategies for making a good album. From the first time I knew this record was going to be a reality my thoughts on the subject were: no frills, great sound, low editing, organic solo piping. There are a handful of squeaks and squawks, everything we love about the pipes. The Japanese art of finding the beauty in imperfection is called Wabi-Sabi. I think this idea embodies the pipes, their music, and their place in traditional music. Every melody, either common or eccentric, is important to me and I hope you enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed playing them for you.
Swimming Against the Falls Joey Abarta
"In this impressive display of piping ability Joey Abarta demonstrates his commitment to the instrument and, more importantly, to the ways in which the pipes have been played by previous masters. In taking an engaged approach to the piping tradition, in lavishing attention on the great recorded heritage of the pipes and absorbing playing techniques, he arrives at his own unique style and proves that anyone anywhere, through his or her own efforts, can contribute to revitalising Irish musical traditions in creative and meaningful ways. I am very happy to recommend this CD as it represents the very admirable process of a musician finding meaning and modes of expression through closely engaging with those standards of expressive excellence established by our piping predecessors.”
-Harry Bradley, Ireland
Joey Abarta & Nathan Gourley, feat. Owen Marshall
"Boston based Uilleann piper Joey Abarta and fiddler Nathan Gourley are two of America’s great young trad musicians, who have been playing music together daily since 2013. Their debut duo album, Copley Street, featuring Owen Marshall on Greek bouzouki, has an undeniable chemistry and demonstrates a nuanced understanding of each the other's playing. Their music includes offbeat settings of well-known tunes and beautiful pieces that seem to languish in obscurity. "Copley Street" is a wonderful album from two stunning young players that adds to Boston’s rich history of traditional Irish music."
-Dan Neely, The Irish Echo