Pulled into Castleisland to stay with old friend Tony Halsall (Jackie has a houseful). Have a gig at the Half Barrel at 10. Kathleen O’Connor keeps a great house. A nice slow start to the festival.
I did my flat out festival day today – 12 hours of sessions from 3pm to 3 am. #1 was with very good musicians Jackie Daly, Matt Cranitch, Paul De Grae and Connie O’Connell. The firs three of those had visited Newfoundland this July for the first annual Seamus Creagh festival. I had seen the pics on Facebook but wanted to make sure my fellow Canadians had taken good care of them.
Next 6pm session at the Crown with Donal Cullinane and Mike Roche. John McAulliffe bent my ear about Liz Carroll, Scottish Music, and the proper lattitude and longtitude om my city, Edmonton.
Next 10pm session at Kearney’s with Dennis O’Connor and Con Moynihan. That one was flying. Georgia left with some of the youn musicians for another session then at 1am told me she was at the River Island Hotel where the sessions go all night. I followed her there and met Tim Edey http://www.myspace.com/begleyandedey.He is a fabulous nylon string guitarist from England – hugely influeced by Stephen Cooney. More tunes and stagger home at 3 am.
Arrived in Ennis at 2pm to meet John Culliney who had prepared his usual huge feast and a house full of guests. Paulo, Niamh, and Annette were at the house and a roast chicken meal with all the Irish roast veg – turnip, parsnips, carrots and spuds. Then some tunes and back on the road. Bank holiday Friday meant the roads were jammed and the 3 towns below Limerick were 15-30 minutes getting through. Arrived to Jackie and Annie – more food and fun – then down to the Patrick O’Keeffe Festival launch at the River Island Hotel. Georgia and I played a set of Michael Coleman reels on radio Kerry for Danny O’Mahoney’s program. Now the man before was singing the traditional Kerry song “The Hunting of the Ram” and went on rather long.”He was after singing 20 verses, I thought he’d never stop” said Jackie. so we had to cut our set short to get the rest of the guests on before the end of the program.
We continued on to Kearney’s bar, my local here, and had a might session until late with Eilish Murphy and Jonathan Roche.