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 Post subject: John Murphy - RIP
PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2017 11:08 am 
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The new Piobaire fell in the door just now and it brought the sad news of the death, at 56, of John Murphy, in the form of a obituary by Ken Lynam..

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John was one of the stalwarts of piping and part a new wave of young pipers during the 1980s. The story going around was that he was on the job delivering packages in 1979 when the Sense of Ireland festival was in progress at the Battersea Arts Centre in London. He walked into a venue with a delivery and came face to face with young Jimmy O'Brien-Moran playing the pipes. John's reaction was 'that's for me' and he went for it. By the early eighties he was playing the concerts at the Willie week, was teaching in London and in Ireland. He always had good tunes and I picked up more than a few from him during my initial learning time. At some point he started playing Scottish tunes, strathspeys with long extended triplet runs and that sort of thing.

He was always interested, friendly and ready for a chat. And then, by the early nineties, he disappeared off the scene and rumour had it he had moved to Thailand. I saw him once since, when he appeared at a Willie week, but he wasn't for talking that time. He did send a lovely appreciative e-mail out of the blue when I released the CD with Kitty Hayes and I thought it was a genuinely lovely gesture and this probably summed up the man who made it.

Rest well.

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 Post subject: Re: John Murphy - RIP
PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2017 1:50 pm 
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Oh dear... that is very sad news indeed Mr.Gumby.

Lovely photo of John :thumbsup:


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 Post subject: Re: John Murphy - RIP
PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:06 pm 
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Ah no!!

Another gentleman gone.
John was my teacher at the Willie Week in '87 or maybe '88. He introduced us to the possibility of Donegal and Scottish Strathspeys and Highlands on the pipes. He opened our minds to another world of music that wasn't Ennis, Doran or Rowsome.
He'll always be an influence on my piping.

Rest well young man.

Tommy

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 Post subject: Re: John Murphy - RIP
PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2017 3:07 pm 
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Video: John Murphy playing Peter Street/Mulhaire's

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 Post subject: Re: John Murphy - RIP
PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2017 3:22 pm 
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You do your friend well in your tribute, in a touching and heartfelt way. And in that, bring him to us who had not known of him.

Thank you

Pwrt


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 Post subject: Re: John Murphy - RIP
PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:05 pm 
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Hi Peter

Thanks for that. Ken Lynam wrote a nice obituary for John in An Piobaire.

I remember John well and I always liked his piping. He had a nice way of playing the Old Bush.

Like Tommy said, himself and Joe McLaughlin were the first two that I heard playing Donegal tunes on the pipes.

Ar dheis De go raibh a anam.

John


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 Post subject: Re: John Murphy - RIP
PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2017 7:45 am 
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Only for John Murphy I might have never taken up the Uilleann pipes. During the eighties while living in London I was sharing a house with Tomas O'Cananin's daughter who was a cellist for the European Youth orchestra at the time. One afternoon I was flicking through her musican's union handbook when I came across the name name John Murphy under the heading of Uilleann piper ,I gave him a call and he directed me to the London pipers club of which I was a member for a few years.
John was a fine and knowledgeable piper , I once heard a story that when John caught the piping bug and in the days before chanters were readily available ,he was so keen to get going that he got a piece of a wooden broom handle and drilled holes in it at the same spacing as a chanter so he could practise (silently) his fingering while waiting for his pipes to be made.



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 Post subject: Re: John Murphy - RIP
PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2017 8:26 am 
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I had a cassette of him that Sheila Church brought back from Miltown back in the day, John playing the Rollicking Boys with an E flat instead of an E in the second part, making it sound like a hijaz scale. Then a funny discussion about the ghost D coming in to the music more and how Ennis saw it as an indication of moral decay etc. Lovely player. He worked for a while in Montreal when I was starting, for Gillette (?) I think, then I lost touch with him. Lovely man, very encouraging. Younger than me, that always makes me feel old. Sigh.

I just listened to the clips at NPU, and he does that hijaz variation in the Tandaragee the last time through. Good man. I was struck by how many of those tunes I learned from that tape of him. Great playing indeed.


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 Post subject: Re: John Murphy - RIP
PostPosted: Sat Nov 25, 2017 12:54 pm 
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Sorry to hear about John Murphy, Peter. I'm afraid I wasn't aware of him as I didn't get to Willie Week until 1996. I've listened now to the NPU video clips and he certainly could play.


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