The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #152354   Message #3563609
Posted By: Mr Red
02-Oct-13 - 10:33 AM
Thread Name: Traditional Music: Where are we going wrong?
Subject: RE: Traditional Music: Where are we going wrong?
When the English public stop laughing at the WORD Morris, then we will have respect for our tradition in music, customs, song, etc.

In Ireland their dance tradition was considered a joke until Michael Flatley turned up and was the leading light of Riverdance. Now they are frightened of winning the Eurovision Song Contest for fear of having to pay his fee for reminding them how exciting their tradtion is.

Amazingly they now regard him as Irish as Molly Malone. He is American and was digging ditches in Chicago when the Dubliners made the call. He had won the World Irish Dancing Championships for about 11 years by then and was pretty good at it.
Lord of the Dance (tune) is an American Shaker Hymn "Simple Gifts", Words by Sydney Carter as English as the come. Molly Malone has no record of existing, the song was first publish in Edinburgh by a Scotsman but has many similarities to an earlier song by an Essex man.

Ireland had a healthy tradition of making their own music, particularly in the rural areas because they didn't have much money. Since they became Celtic Tigers and paid the price of their hubris (as if we didn't see their growth was built on sand! and subsidies - how apt) the tourist industry is the quickest way to recovery and draws on their tradition heavily. But it can!

Every town around the world seems to have an Irish pub - Green seat covers & Guiness being the only proof of validity. Even on Ko Tao in Thailand - so Ewen Macoll songs and varied pop songs are now considered Irish because they are played loudly throughout.

When I play in English sessions I often get some reference to "Irish Music" from the general public. England does not have a singular identity. Ireland has Music and Dance. Belgium has Beer, France has Fromage. Germans have efficient industry, America has Hollywood, Brazil has coffee, we have football we share (not me personally understand) with the world and we are not that good at it!