Sunday, August 29, 2010

Uilleann pipes presentation by Fulbright scholar

The Irish Emigrant: "The Institute for Irish-American Studies is happy to announce that its first event of the Fall Semester will be a presentation regarding the uilleann pipes by Siobh�n N�Mhaolag�in. Siobh�n comes from a strong piping tradition with which the Mulligan family is associated and she will be spending this academic year at Lehman College as a Fulbright Irish language instructor. The presentation will take place on Thursday, September 2nd, at 1:30pm at the Riverdale Senior Center, Century Building (side entrance), 2600 Netherland Avenue, Riverdale, in the Bronx. Seating is limited for this free event and reservations are required. Please phone (718) 960-6722 or e-mail . This event is co-sponsored by the CUNY-IIAS and the Irish & Irish-American Group of the Riverdale Senior Center."

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Inspirational Cork figure supplied instruments to musicians

"Michael Crowley:�NOT SURPRISINGLY, musicians from all parts of Ireland attended the funeral of Michael Crowley, the owner of a Cork institution, Crowley’s Music Centre on McCurtain Street in the heart of the city, who has died at the age of 69.

It was from Michael Crowley that Rory Gallagher, renowned blues-rock electric guitar player, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and bandleader, got his first small acoustic guitar.

It was also at Crowley’s that 15-year-old Gallagher later bought the famous “Strat”, the emblematic 1961 Fender Stratocaster that became the trademark of his distinctive style. A sculpture of the much-battered and stained electric guitar, reputedly the first of its kind in Ireland, is to be seen in Paul Street on the other side of the Lee.

The story goes that Jim Connolly, a member of the Irish Show Band, originally ordered a cherry-red Strat and so, when a “sunburst” version arrived from Fender, he decided not to buy it. Crowley put the gleaming instrument in the shop window as secondhand, with a price tag of just under �100, a lot of money for a teenager in 1963."

Too Long in This Condition

Alasdair Roberts & Friends: Too Long in This Condition | CD review | Music | The Guardian: "Scotsman Alasdair Roberts is a cult hero thanks to his highly individual, bleak or quirky songs – with influences that range from ancient Celtic ballads to Robin Williamson – and to his equally original treatment of traditional songs. Last year, he released an album of his own material, Spoils. Now comes a new and typically surprising album of folk songs. It's unexpected not only because of the songs he chooses – which include folk favourites such as Barbara Allen, The Golden Vanity and Long Lankin – but also the jaunty backing for what are often tragic or gory lyrics. He succeeds because he is a fine storyteller, making even the best-known song sound as if he wrote it, and he uses the instrumentation to good effect, so the almost cheerful fiddle work on Little Sir Hugh makes this story of child murder even more horrific. Elsewhere, Roberts mixes his own fine guitar playing and understated vocals with uilleann pipes on�Who Put the Blood on Your Right Shoulder, Son?, edges towards stomping folk-rock in The Burning of Auchindoun, and is helped by some impressive vocal back-up from Emily Portman on several songs, including The Daemon Lover. It's his most�accessible album to date."