According to the band's Web site, "Ceili" (pronounced KAY-lee) is a Gaelic word for "a party with live music and dancing," and "Rain" represents the good things showered down on us from the heavens above. It's an appropriate name, because Erasers On Pencils is a party for your ears and a blessing from above.

Ceili Rain is an undeniably Irish band, but it's not purely Irish. They're like The Beatles with a Celtic influence, with maybe a bit of Grateful Dead thrown in. There are many Celtic bands out there working hard to remain faithful to the sound and traditions of their heritage. But Ceili Rain offers a nice twist—rather than a Celtic band trying to rock, they're a rock band with a Celtic flavor. They capture this blend brilliantly thanks to some classic-pop/rock savvy and smart songwriting. The band's frontman, Bob Halligan Jr., has written a lot of well-known songs for artists such as Eli, Bob Carlisle, Rebecca St. James,, Cher, Judas Priest, and Michael Bolton. His songwriting is instantly catchy with thought-provoking lyrics. He's got to be one of Christian music's best-kept secrets. And the musicianship! Solid all the way around. There are numerous instruments—including drums, accordian, guitars, bass, fiddles, and bagpipes—and instrumentalists, and it's difficult to single out any one because they're all so good.

Bob is a great lead vocalist, often reminding me of John Lennon—especially on the song "Long For You," which makes a simple but effective case for the existence of God. "Junkyard" is a passionate rocker about shunning the temptations and ugly things of this world. It, too, shows a strong Lennon influence. The title track is actually a Latin number (yes, Latin), and it provides a nice ...

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Erasers On Pencils
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Release Date
May 1, 2001
Label
CD Baby
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