The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #162314 Message #3862727
Posted By: Jim Carroll
24-Jun-17 - 12:46 PM
Thread Name: Oldtime Musical Gatherings: What Were They Called?
Subject: RE: Oldtime Musicals . . . What Were They Called?
I meant to thank Jeff Long for his interesting question - it's one that could fill volumes
Our traditional songs and music are often associated with pubs or public meeting places, but in fact they were once almost exclusive home entertainments in rural areas
One of the most interesting venues in Ireland were the crossroads dances
A central spot would be selected to accommodate the greatest number of outlying dwellings and a platform erected (where possible)
The locals would assemble there on Saturday nights (Sunday was forbidden by the church) and a scratch band of musicians would play for dancing (officially up to midnight, but not always)
The priests broke them up, often by beating the participants with sticks and occasionally smashing up any instruments they could lay hands on
Unchaperoned young people were considered morally at risk of being exposed to "sin".
These crossroads dances all but disappeared some time in the 1930s