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Keith Harkin

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Album Review

Irish crooner Keith Harkin makes his solo debut with his 2012 eponymous album. A member of the all-male variety show Celtic Thunder, Harkin has showcased his laid-back vocal style across the globe, and his debut release fits well into the show's template. While he is a singer/songwriter in his own right, here Harkin focuses primarily on cover songs that make the most of his naturally burnished vocal twang and romantic surfer-dude persona. These are slick, expertly produced songs that walk a fine line between adult contempo, modern country, and Celtic-inspired pop music, with an obvious emphasis on 2010s-style radio-friendly production. Such cuts as Harkin's duet with Colbie Caillat on Van Morrison's "Have I Told You Lately That I Love You," his reverent take on the Fred Neil-penned Harry Nilsson classic "Everybody's Talkin'," and especially his rambling version of the Beatles' "Here Comes the Sun" should appeal to fans of current Top 40. Often compared to the similarly mellow Jack Johnson, Harkin's own compositions, like the lighthearted "Orange Moon" and the uplifting "Take It Away Boys," actually have a bit more of a country vibe, and in that sense bring to mind the crossover stylings of artists like Keith Urban and Lady Antebellum. Ultimately, Harkin has a pleasant voice, and the easygoing quality of these productions makes for relaxing afternoon listening.

Customer Reviews

A Nice Start

Crisp vocals, warm tones, sparkling guitar work---this is a nice, solid first album. My only "complaint" would be---More Keith, Less Cover Material. Mr. Harkin has a fine touch as a singer-songwriter in the vein of James Taylor/Glen Campbell/Jimmy Webb with hints of Neil Young and Jim Croce thrown in. And while it may be considered "safe" to have a debut album containing interpretations of tracks made famous by other artists, I think Mr. Harkin should be turned loose and allowed to fill an album with orginals. His work has the strength to stand on its own.

Best Album EVER!

Keith Harkin is so brilliant. He writes music that everyone can relate to, with equally stunning tunes and lyrics. He brings a new and orignal take to every single cover he performs, and the result is a rich sounding, well-rounded, amazing, spectacular album that people of all ages are going to enjoy! I'm 16, but I have a little 5 year old sister who loves listening to his music, along with my mother who is in her 40s. I can predict nothing but good for his future.

Great debut album!

My favorite songs are the ones Keith wrote himself. "Daisy Fields," "Orange Moon," & "Take It Away Boys" are all solid, enjoyable songs with honest lyrics. The first single release, "Don't Forget About Me," is upbeat, joyous and makes the listener smile. Audiences love songs they can sing to, and Keith gave this tune a great hook. If you listen to it a few times you'll find yourself humming it as you go about your day. "Nothing But You & I" is a love song delivered with genuine need and vulnerability. "Rosa" has a lullaby feel to it, with sincere vocals and gentle piano. It is an intimate, touching song. All six of these songs are pure and heartfelt, sung with a sincerity that is rare among todays young artists.

The cover tunes are well done too. I loved the Irish influence in "The End of the Innocence." The pipes made it fresh and unique while Keith's voice ensured that it remained as powerful and convincing as the original. Keith and Colbie are a credible, balanced duet on "Have I Told You Lately." It was a wise choice to pair their complementary styles. Colbie fans are sure to love Keith's effortless vocal style and his guitar skills. Of all the covers, though, "Tears of Hercules" was my favorite. With the exception of "Rosa" I found it to be the most emotionally evocative piece on the album. All in all, I highly recommend this CD. It is a great debut to showcase the range of Keith's skills, both as a writer and performer. I think it will appeal to both his long-time fans and folks who are absolutely new to his music. It is a win all around! :)


Born: June 10, 1986 in Derry, Northern Ireland

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Irish singer/songwriter Keith Harkin is a member of the all-male vocal ensemble Celtic Thunder and a soulful folk and rock-influenced solo artist. A native of Derry, Northern Ireland, Harkin began singing around age four. In 2005, he moved to London to pursue music and acting. Before joining Celtic Thunder, Harkin played various music festivals in Britain and nabbed the lead role in the 2006 BBC television production Dha Theanga, for which he also contributed music. A surfer, Harkin is often compared...
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Keith Harkin, Keith Harkin
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Customer Ratings