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Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector

MartinRyan 16 Jul 08 - 04:36 PM
Folkiedave 16 Jul 08 - 04:40 PM
Liam's Brother 16 Jul 08 - 09:21 PM
Fred McCormick 17 Jul 08 - 04:59 AM
GUEST,DV 17 Jul 08 - 07:22 AM
GUEST,John Moulden 17 Jul 08 - 09:12 AM
Alice 17 Jul 08 - 09:27 AM
MartinRyan 26 Jul 08 - 11:37 AM
MartinRyan 27 Jul 08 - 03:17 PM
Richard Bridge 27 Jul 08 - 05:49 PM
GUEST,DV 27 Jul 08 - 08:57 PM
MartinRyan 28 Jul 08 - 03:28 AM
GUEST,DV 28 Jul 08 - 09:29 AM
MartinRyan 28 Jul 08 - 09:36 AM
GUEST,DV 28 Jul 08 - 11:30 AM
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Subject: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: MartinRyan
Date: 16 Jul 08 - 04:36 PM

Just came across the following announcement from John Moulden:
______________________________
Hugh Shields, song collector, friend and mentor of a generation of singers and students of song in Ireland, passed away this morning, 16th July 2008. He was born in 1929. Funeral arrangements are not yet clear but the service of thanksgiving for his life will take place at St Bartholomew's Parish Church, Dublin with cremation at Mount Jerome, Dublin on Friday or Saturday.

Hugh Shields was the most incisive commentator on Irish song of the last century. He combined a love of songs and singers with great intuitive understanding of the workings of tradition and its contributors. His capacity for analysis was unsurpassed and his work is beautifully and concisely descriptive; every sentence deserves repeated reading.

His books together with the recordings of traditional singers he was instrumental in issuing will be his memorial. No student of song should neglect his "Narrative Singing in Ireland".

John Moulden


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: Folkiedave
Date: 16 Jul 08 - 04:40 PM

A great loss - he was a wonderfully literate writer.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: Liam's Brother
Date: 16 Jul 08 - 09:21 PM

Hugh Shields was one of the greats.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: Fred McCormick
Date: 17 Jul 08 - 04:59 AM

I'm extremely saddened to hear the news. Strangely enough I never met Hugh Shields, but I was a great admirer of his work, and with good reason


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: GUEST,DV
Date: 17 Jul 08 - 07:22 AM

I never met him either, but I've a dog-eared copy of his wonderful book.

And though I didn't know Hugh, I've corresponded with John Moulden over the years, and he certainly has always spoken highly of him.

A very sad loss.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: GUEST,John Moulden
Date: 17 Jul 08 - 09:12 AM

Thanks to Martin for passing on this information. For anyone who is in a position to attend, the funeral will be on Saturday at 11.00am. St Bartholomew's is on Clyde Road, Dublin.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: Alice
Date: 17 Jul 08 - 09:27 AM

My sympathy to his friends and family. Another cultural treasure lost.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: MartinRyan
Date: 26 Jul 08 - 11:37 AM

From today's Irish Times:

______________________________________________________
HUGH SHIELDS, who has died aged 78, was a senior lecturer in French at Trinity College Dublin.

An authority on Irish traditional song with an international reputation, he was a founder member of the Folk Music Society of Ireland/ Cumann Cheol Tíre Éireann and the Irish Traditional Music Archive/ Taisce Cheol Dúchais Éireann.

His friend and collaborator Nicholas Carolan, said at his funeral service: "It has been the good fortune of Ireland that he used his many talents, predominantly for the collection and study and publication of Irish traditional song and music, especially that of his native Ulster, whose accent he never lost in all his years in Dublin."

Born in Belfast in 1929, he was one of two children of John and Norah Shields. He attended the Royal Belfast Academical Institution and won a scholarship to Trinity College, where he specialised in French and Spanish, while also studying German and Russian.

In 1952 he received a first-class moderatorship in modern languages and became a Trinity scholar. After a year teaching French and German at Coleraine Academical Institution, a key year in the development of his folk music interests, he secured a post as a junior lecturer, specialising in medieval French, at Trinity.

He became a junior lecturer in 1954 and a full lecturer in 1965. Awarded a PhD in 1966 for his thesis, An Old French Book of Legends and its Apocalyptic Background, in 1970 he was awarded a full tutorship. In 1978 he was promoted to senior lecturer and in 1980 was made a full fellow of Trinity.

He had a particular interest in questions of orality and dialect which were common to his professional studies and to his lifelong and highly productive interest in Irish and other traditional song. Students remember him singing traditional songs to illustrate his medieval French lectures.

He was several times in the 1980s acting head of department, from which he retired in 1994. However he continued teaching in Trinity for another four years in the school of music where, with Breandán Breathnach, Caitlín Uí Éigeartaigh and Nicholas Carolan he had taught Irish traditional music part time since 1982.

In 1985 he lectured in the department of ethnomusicology at the University of California, Los Angeles. He also lectured widely at traditional music festivals and summer schools.

As a young graduate teaching in Coleraine in 1953 and beginning his work of collection, he first met road worker Eddie Butcher, his main source - singer and friend. Eddie was central to his publishing traditional song in print and on sound recordings for the next five decades. He and his wife Lisa also collected in Donegal, Down, Wicklow, France and elsewhere, and he collaborated with the Dublin collector Tom Munnelly.

He edited selections from his field recordings for record companies Topic and Leader Sound, for the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum and for his own cassette label, European Ethnic Oral Traditions.

His classic study Narrative Singing in Ireland: Lays, Ballads, Come- All-Yes and Other Songs (1993) is essential reading for scholars and enthusiasts. He followed this with Tunes of the Munster Pipers, his edition of oral-tradition melodies from the James Goodman manuscripts in the TCD library.

Published in 1998, it has had a perceptible influence on contemporary uileann piping.

He also contributed articles to national and international journals including Ceol, Ulster Folklife, Hermathena, Long Room, Folklife, Folklore and the Yearbook of the International Folk Music Council. He was the editor of the Folk Music Society's newsletter Ceol Tíre (1973-1989), its journal Éigse Cheol Tíre - Irish Folk Music Studies (1973-2001) and other publications.

He made a valued contribution to the development of the Irish traditional music archive over many years, a contribution that included the donation of his large collection of field recordings to the archive for public access and the editing of one of its publications.

He is survived by his wife Lisa, daughter Kitty, sons Michael, Denis and Philip, and sister Jean.

...

Hugh Edwin Shields: born September 8th, 1929; died July 16th, 2008.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: MartinRyan
Date: 27 Jul 08 - 03:17 PM

Refresh


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 27 Jul 08 - 05:49 PM

He sounds like a very learned and respected man - who understood what folk song was.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: GUEST,DV
Date: 27 Jul 08 - 08:57 PM

I guess I'm a bit taken back more here don't seem to be aware of this traditional music legend.

While this site does strike me as being mostly for English music aficionados, and marginally so for American music, I guess I'm still surprised.

Is this lack of awareness/interest of who the man was due to it being summer, and not the usual traditional music crowd being around?


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: MartinRyan
Date: 28 Jul 08 - 03:28 AM

In fairness, he has had, through ill health, a low profile in recent years.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: GUEST,DV
Date: 28 Jul 08 - 09:29 AM

I understand. But Ewan MacColl has been dead for quite some time too, but does that mean we've forgotten who he is?

When someone of Hugh Shields' stature passes--a man who was a legendary figure in the traditional song field (which has far too few experts, as we all know too well), I just expected to see more than this handful of posts, is all. Was it the same for the passing of Tom Munnelly here? I don't mean to sour the obit thread, so I'll just drop it. But I do find it odd.


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: MartinRyan
Date: 28 Jul 08 - 09:36 AM

Tom would have been better known in this forum, over the years.
Tom Munnelly OBIT thread.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Obit: Hugh Shields, Collector
From: GUEST,DV
Date: 28 Jul 08 - 11:30 AM

Thanks for posting that link, MartinRyan. It is a great read.


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