With parents who were both singers and song collectors and a strong family focus on sharing songs, Byrne has inherited a unique repertoire as well as a fascination with unearthing and reimagining traditional songs. Matthew is set to record his 4th studio album next year in Sheffield, UK. It will be produced by folk legend Martin Simpson and feature instrumentation by some of the finest musicians on the English folk scene including Nancy Kerr, Andy Cutting, and Liz Hanks. Byrne’s last two recordings were each awarded Traditional Album of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards and this highly anticipated 4th album is sure to grab further attention of traditional music audiences across the Atlantic.
“I’m not a folklorist or ethnomusicologist, at least not officially. And I’m not a purist. I’ve poured over the nuances of the pub standards as much as the obscure murder balladry. What attracts me to a traditional song is the right combination of melody and language, both of which have always fascinated me.”