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PostPosted: Tue Jan 28, 2020 1:38 pm 
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SteveB wrote:
The link in the OP takes me to the TG4 site, but I get an error message when I try play the vid (“VIDEO_CLOUD_ERR_UNPLAYABLE”). Anyone else getting this?

Steve B

It's still available—just watched it with great pleasure.
Try https://www.tg4.ie/en/player/categories ... ode=086789

Best wishes.

The Other Steve B

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 28, 2020 7:22 pm 
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PB+J wrote:
Yes it's always going to be artificial to varying degrees unless you record people secretly. But the question of how to present this music is interesting. I mean some forms of music are born for the stage. ITM is not one of them. It would certainly have been no more expensive to stage the performances differently. The "concert treatment" was an understandable conscious choice, no? I suspect the lingering influence of O Riada.


I like these Sé Mo Laoch films a lot--they are really enjoyable and for me very evocative of the Ireland I imagine living in but sadly never will. They tend to always be exactly the same thing though. Films of the subject now and back in the day, and excerpts from various contemporaries telling us how great they are. Generally they will be described as completely unique, and then the next film will describe the next person as completely unique and then you get to that point where if everyone is unique no one is unique. There will be very effective footage shot from drones.



This reminds me of my fascination with Cajun culture. I had imagined that my perception of it is what every stranger's would be. And your excellent observation certainly confirms what happens when a stranger experiences a rich culture, be it music, art or cuisine.

There comes a point when everything just begins to taste the same, a sort of gumbo through excessive consumption.

But that is our own perception, a 'dazzled in the headlights' sort of thing, too much, too fast, too hot etc etc.

For my part I cannot tell the difference between Mamou and Eunice Cajun music, yet to a local there is a vast difference. Of course I am not saying the poster suffers the same deaf ear for such things, just that I do.

But about Patsy Hanly there is absolutely no way in my hearing of ITM that his music is some kind of gumbo of everything, and so there is nothing unique about it. Might want to make the case for some other musicians there, but not Patsy.

Let me try to explain this better by an example. For many years I, don't know any other ITM player down here who does, have played a jig called 'The Battering Ram', in a very simple style on my student Irish Flute, because I first heard it played that way by Patsy. That's not to say he plays it in a simplistic way, far from it. Yet like many great ITM players his tunes hang in there and seem to be easily recalled later when I am trying to get them going. So far I have not found any other fluter who has the same effect on me.

Ok, I have personal history in Roscommon Co., so yeah that would explain it. Yet I heard several other Irish musicians, Clare for example, do the exact same thing, taking settings from Patsy, in some cases almost note for note.

Maybe the local style has that advantage? Maybe everybody in Kilrooskey Roscommon is the same? Yet if I listen to any of the other players featured, I do not have the same reaction. Course I am not saying that their performance is lesser because of that, since they all play brilliantly and lovely tune settings. Just that to my ear Patsy's tunes seem to stick. So I would not say this a regional thing, rather like Cooley, Coleman, etc., a persons performance is really easy listening and very memorable.

So IMHO no! I don't agree that there is no such a thing as a unique person in a population of performers, there is always a couple that stand out.

I'll get me hat.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 28, 2020 7:34 pm 
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You maybe misinterpreted my comment. I certainly believe there are unique players. My comment was about the formula they tend to follow in the films. I don't actually blame them--filmmaking is hard, capturing a subject is difficult and takes a team of skilled people and they do a great job on the Sé Mo Laoch films. But they do tend to run to formula. Drone shots. Nice houses with fuzzy scenes out the window. Close ups of waving flowers and signs announcing welcome to....Its charming, and it's not like I have a better idea. It's just a formula.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 29, 2020 6:40 am 
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I've just watched "Sé mo laoch Patsy Hanley". What a gracious, funny, wise, man and an outstanding musician. Good to see Pauline singing and hear about her. Easy to understand why Patsy is so respected and liked as a musician and person. Met Patsy once a few years ago in Miltown listening to a session in front of the outside Central, and fell easily into a conversation about Rudalls, Jon Dodd, and music. I didn't know then of Patsy's status in the world of traditional music in Ireland. As McEvoy said, "being the modest man that he is".

Frank Jordan is a new name to me though. I thought the documentary was well done with a nice balance between Patsy's flute playing, old video clips of Patsy playing, Patsy talking, and musicians talking about Patsy. What's not to like?

The flute in the "Boy on the hilltop/Bag of spuds" clip with the taped barre,l missing the low C# and foot joint ring, looks to be a Rudall, Carte & Co judging by the nickel silver keys and tuning slide, and round strike plates


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 29, 2020 6:48 am 
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FWIW, those clips have been sitting on youtube for donkey's years:

Boy on the Hilltop / Bag of Spuds

Killavil/Happy to Meet

Looking at them now I feel the audience is in rapt attention, listening closely and clearly enjoying the music immensely. Not like their parents made them go at all. There isn't a lot more they can do in the situation.

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Good to see Pauline singing and hear about her.


Pauline was a lovely singer, first time I heard her she sang 'Easter snow', I was mesmerised. Patsy would introduce the song by playing the air on the flute or whistle and it worked beautifully the way they did it.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 29, 2020 2:39 pm 
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Mr.Gumby wrote:
Pauline was a lovely singer, first time I heard her she sang 'Easter snow', I was mesmerized.

Easter Snow.
Now there's a story.
Apparently there lived a lady in the vicinity called "Esther Snow". I don't know if the song is about her, but the place got her name with a twist to the spelling, and so now it is on the map. There's a great clip on YT of a jam at Beirne's pub in Easter Snow, Boyle, Roscommon Co., Ireland with Cathy Jordan, John Carty and others where you can enjoy a local humorous exchange they call 'slagging'.

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