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Renaissance de la Harpe Celtique or Renaissance of the Celtic Harp is a 1970's record album by the Breton master of the celtic harp Alan Stivell that revolutionised the connection between traditional folk music, modern rock music and world music.



The release of this album with its fusion of classical, traditional folk and rock music, its mixture of instruments (cello, harp, electric guitar, traditional and modern drums) and its evocation of a utopian atmosphere and vision of humans in harmony with nature, immediately set it as a benchmark in the celtic music revival of the 1970s.[1]

The music critic Bruce Elder wrote of the album Renaissance de la Harpe Celtique:

People who hear this record are never the same again. Renaissance of the Celtic Harp, one of the most beautiful and haunting records ever made by anybody, introduced the Celtic harp to many thousands of listeners around the world. To call this music gorgeous and ravishing would be the height of understatement—indeed, there aren't words in the English language to describe this record adequately. The opening work, Ys, is a piece inspired by the legend of the fifth century capital of the kingdom of Cornwall, [most versions of the legend place the city in the Douarnenez Bay on the coast of Brittany] which was engulfed by a flood as punishment for its sins. (Debussy wrote one of his finest works, "The Engulfed Cathedral," later adapted by the group Renaissance into "The Harbor" on Ashes Are Burning, based on the same legend). The reflective "Marv Pontkellec" is every bit as sublimely beautiful, but the highlight of this record is "Gaeltacht," a 19 minute musical journey by Stivell's harp across the Gaelic lands of Ireland, Scotland, and the Isle of Man.[2][3]


Credits: Bass [Bass Guitar] - Gérard Levavsseur , Gérard Salkowsky
Bombarde - Alan kloatr , Mig Ar Biz
Cello - Henri Delagarde , Jean Huchot , Manuel Recasens
Double Bass - Jean-Marc Dollez
Drums - Guy Cascales
Drums [Scottish] - Yann-Fanch Ar Merdy
Electric Guitar - Dan Ar Bras
Organ - Gilles Tinayjre
Percussion, Tabla - Michel Delaporte
Producer - Franck Giboni
Viola - Gabriel Beauvais , Paul Hadjaje , Pierre Cheval , Stéphane Weiner


Side A

A1 Ys Arranged By - Stivell
A2 Marv Pointkalleg Arranged By - Denise Megevand Extracts From Welsh Manuscripts
A3a Ap Huw Arranged By - Arnold Dolmetsch
A3b Penllyn Arranged By - Arnold Dolmetsch
A4 Eliz Iza Arranged By - Stivell- Traditional Gaeltacht

Side B

B1a Caitlin Triall Arranged By - Stivell. Irish Melody - Traditional
B1b Port Ui Mhuirgheasa Arranged By - Stivell. Irish Jig - Traditional
B1c Airde Cuan Arranged By - J. Cochevelou. Irish Melody - Traditional
B1d Na Reubairean Arranged By - D. Megevand. Scottish Melody - Traditional
B1e Manx Melody Arranged By - Alan Stivell
B1f Heman Dubh Hebridean Work Song - Traditional
B1g Gaelic Waltz Scottish - Traditional
B1h Struan Robertson (Strathspey) Arranged By - Stivell
B1i The Little Cascade Arranged By - Stivell. Scottish Reel - Traditional
B1j Braigh Loch Lall Arranged By - Stivell. Scottish Melody - Traditional
B1k Port An Deorai Arranged By - Stivell. Irish Jig - Traditional


Fontana 6325 302 [original French release]
Philips 6414 406 [British release (w/ translated title) of 1973]
Rounder 3067 [American release of 1982]
Philips 51 [British cassette/vinyl of 1983, re-released in 1990]
Philips 818007-2 [British CD release of 1990][4]


  1. ^ JT Koch (ed). Celtic Culture. A Historical Encyclopaedia ABC-CLIO 2006 pp 1627-1628
  2. ^ Bruce Elder. All Music Guide, (last accessed 15 July 2009)
  3. ^ Guyot, Charles. The Legend of the City of Ys, Amherst, MA: University of Massachusetts Press, 1979.
  4. ^ Jim Chokey. Discography. Alan Stivell. (last accessed 15 July 2009)


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