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THE WELSH CONNECTION
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The Welsh people's love of song is no secret, but there's a great deal more to the country's musical heritage than its male voice choirs and rugby anthems. In recent years Wales has become known as a land of hip-hoppers, beat-boppers and rockers and rollers. Blackwood's Manic Street Preachers, who became one of the most acclaimed rock acts of the Nineties, show no signs of slowing down, while their compatriots the Super Furry Animals have likewise passed the test of time.

Also Wales based is uber patriot and rock chick Cerys Matthews, who's also proud to call Cardiff her hometown. The Catatonia singer leaves pop fans in little doubt of her cultural heritage, singing the title track from hit album International Velvet entirely in her native tongue, except for the words: "Every day when I wake up I thank the Lord I'm Welsh".

On the classical front, award-winning Bryn Terfel, who originally hails from Caernarfon, is in similarly hot demand all over the planet. Wales' other musical luminaries include Feeder, the Stereophonics and, of course, Tom Jones.
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