It was, said Rufus Wainwright, "a difficult but uplifting night", and it was a memorable, poignant concert. In June 2010, Richard Thompson's Meltdown at London's Royal Festival Hall included a tribute to the remarkable Quebecois singer-songwriter Kate McGarrigle, who died five months earlier. The cast included Kate's children, Rufus and Martha Wainwright, and her sister Anna, and the songs were a reminder of Kate's range, matching intense, personal lyrics with often exquisite melodies influenced by folk, country and hymns. Thankfully, the event was recorded, as were other tribute concerts in New York and Toronto, and this 34-track set includes many of the highlights. Rufus Wainwright and Emmylou Harris collaborate on the tragic I Eat Dinner, Norah Jones and Martha Wainwright duet on the rousing (Talk To Me of) Mendocino, and there's a historic reunion between Richard and Linda Thompson on the pained Go Leave. Glorious.
Various: Sing Me The Songs: Celebrating the Work of Kate McGarrigle – review
Robin Denselow is a journalist and broadcaster who specialises in music and politics. He is the author of When The Music's Over, a history of political pop