The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #121693   Message #2660184
Posted By: Jess A
19-Jun-09 - 10:22 AM
Thread Name: BS: Plastic Paddy slur
Subject: RE: BS: Plastic Paddy slur
I am another who can see both sides of the argument here.

I'm english and love to play traditional english music. It distresses me that a vast proportion of the general population in this country and elsewhere have no concept that there is any traditional english music, and assume that if I'm playing something folky on a fiddle then it must be irish (that happens a lot). It distresses me when some of my peers (by which I mean players of traditional music in England) have so embraced irish music that they are downright rude about anything that isn't irish (an particularly so about anything that is english) - that happens more often than I'd like it to, as well. It amuses me more than distresses me when people who have no more irish blood than I do (or less, in fact - I have an irish great grandmother, fwiw) are so enamoured of 'irishness' that they embrace all the cliches in Eric's song. And because of these things, I've been known to use the term plastic paddy myself, in a fairly derogatory way.

BUT - I love traditional irish music myself, play a fair bit of it, know and respect a lot of irish people (including a vast proportion of my in-laws) and have NO TIME AT ALL for being racist to or about actual irish people, or culture.

I don't see a contradiction between my above two paragraphs, and I wonder whether those who are offended by Eric's song just haven't experienced the same kind of irritatingly sycophantic 'everything irish is wonderful, everything wonderful is irish' rosy-tinted-spectacled view (or in this case either green or guinness tinted... or both) of all things irish that he is describing... ???