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Gotta love the coincidences…
A day without being barbecued by sun blazing into a spare room, so cracking on with book sorting, to the soundtrack of the powerful box set Lilac disc…I’d just thought how great your voice combines with Mick Hanly’s (‘On the blanket’ ) and, on a break, I read your comment about Mick’s song about mothers…I’d love to know the title,sometime, if poss…Condolences to Geraint. You express the sentiments, much better than I could…
Now, a cuppa and enjoying a re visit to ‘The Christy Moore Song Book’, published by Brandon in 1984 – the ‘Walton’s’ sticker confirmed that I’d have bought it on an 80’s day trip to Dublin – a lost afternoon in Walton’s, Eason’s, GPO and caffeine hits in Bewley’s…such happy times – all brought back via this great book – with some excellent photos as well…
Enough rambling for now – Jeez, ‘Scariff Martyrs’, fits the tune so well, beautifully sung too – fair play…
I well remember the night in 1981 when we recorded “On The Blanket”..Moving Hearts were playing in a Community Hall in Coolooney,County Sligo…it was the day that Martin Hurson died on Hunger Strike in the H.Blocks…Mick and I shared the vocal, Declan was playing his heart out….the atmosphere in the small audience was strange….around the Republic there were different responses to the Hunger Strike….some supported the validity of the protest , some were anti-Republican (with every shade of opinion between the two)….a short time after we played at a Festival in Castlebar, County Mayo…it was the day that Kieran Doherty died on Hunger Strike…I remember Ian Dury was also on the bill ( and I think Sir Bob G.)…there was a back stage bar for the musicians….when Kieran Doherty’s death was announced there seemed to me to be a sense of apathy at the “Artist’s bar”
Hello Christy it has been a while since I last posted on here,time seems to fly,Hope you and the family are well,hope the gigs are in full swing and back to normal soon,Lost my 84 year old mother recently and I miss her every day,Let the music keep our spirits high,shine on Christy see you along the way.
thats the way of it Geraint…sorry to read of your loss….chances are you’ll miss your Mother for the remainder of your own life..its such a close bond..particularly when cherished….every part of us came from our Mothers…our Father’s helped set the ball rolling but our Mothers grew us, sustained us…when our Mother died in 1992 I felt like a boat that had slipped its moorings..I was finally adrift from whence I came…every day I think of her..I still feel her presence, hear her voice, laugh at her sayings and observations…..
Mick Hanly wrote a lovely song about it once..it takes a while to accept they are physically gone..
Thanks for the chance to share details about the podcast with Wally Page. It’s available wherever people access their podcasts by searching Irish Music Magazine official podcast.
I feel it was a nice chat with Wally, not something he likes to do, as he says himself, but we got a nice sunny evening for it. Met up with Mary Coughlan early in the week and our chat is out tomorrow afternoon.
Bit of Eddi Reader on the turntable here this evening.
I Liked your interview with Wally..you are developing a good interview technique..your interest in the songs and the singer are very apparent..well done Lar….
Hi Christy/ all
Wonderful rabbit holes based on recent comments here…
Aeons ago, ‘Lord Bateman’ was recorded a few times…I couldn’t recall specifics, but sometimes wondered if it was a variation on ‘Lord Baker’ ( a bit like ‘My Son John/ Tim alternatives, that we riffed on recently). I finally checked out the ‘Lord Bateman’ song and there’s a fascinating youtube post that has quite a crossover between the two chaps… ‘ Lord Bateman and the Turkish Lady’, features in the repertoire of the legendary US folklorists, the Ritchie family (a huge number of songs – often Appalachian variants of Anglo/ Irish versions). Jean recorded the song for Folkways…Happy hunting to all who pursue the links and enjoy both epic songs. Christy – any idea how ‘ Lord Baker’ reached John ‘Jacko’ Reilly.
Helen – great shout re Andrew Cronshaw – eclectic (to say the least) and well worth a wander at http://www.cloudvalley.com
John – thanks for the reminder about Lindisfarne – I’m enjoying revisiting…more frequently, I play solo material by Alan Hull (RIP)the main writer for the band. Very powerful songs, often with a more subtle tempo than band material – amazing that most of the songs are c 50 years old now!
Have a good day folks – good luck trying to keep cool.
I heard recently that Baker and Bateman often knocked around together…passionate men for the romance and well able to quaff the Schnapps,Chianti,Porter and Ouzo…not to mention their weakness for Turkish Delight
Well done Ed and thanks for all your sleuthing, I will definitely search out the No Quarter version of Evermore. Christy its always interesting to hear about your early days on the road and the people you met along the way. One of the first bands I got into (many years ago) was Lindisfarne, just wondered if you ever crossed paths with them asI suspect them boys knew how to party back in the day?
people with whom I shared elevators…Dame Edna in Melbourne, Lou Reed in London, Charlie Pride in Sydney, Ian Botham in Muscat……I might have met one of the Lindasfarians above in Tornbane Cottages nr Kircaldy in East Fife but it was all a wee bit hazy….Josh McCrea was there,messin about in the river…High Speed Grass, Aly Bain and Jimmy Hutchinson too
This guestbook has become a daily delight, thanks to all and Christy too.
Loving all this stuff about Lord Baker, it’s led to a number of rabbit holes.
One leads to Sofia, The Saracen’s Daughter (edited version on YouTube) and I think I’m on the right lines because another track on Andrew Cronshaw’s Ochre album is called The Shores of Turkey and it drops it into that familiar Lord Baker musical phrase at a couple of points. Always nice to encounter who Lord Baker might have fallen for.
Several tempting rabbit holes at this point:
EST Behind the Yashmak (and then Face of Love > Elevation of Love)
Ibrahim Maalouf Beirut
Ketama – Africa
I seem to be nothing if not a bit of a musical tart, ttfn … pleasure beckons
that Lord Baker lad seems to have fallen in love frequently…
I plucked up courage to start working on Lord Baker yesterday. Sat at the piano to try to fiddle my way through.
I tell you what, I really get it when you say “instantly smitten”.. What is it with this strange, sophisticated, free as a bird tune.
The words have a similar effect. I took them from your lyrics section. A million verses different lengths and who knows about a rhyme. In my head they are the light of rose and sky and gold.
Its the most beaautiful song I’ve ever had the joy of working on.
As you can see, it’s cast its spell conpletely.
On a slightly different note. The 33 packs of gold always make me laugh. I wonder how the ex bride got that lot home?
Thanks to Rory for the shout out about Mick Blake. New to me. Like a breath of fresh air.
playing fiddle and piano simultaneously….
John Reilly had a unique way with lyrics and with melody…
I have betimes inserted lines, even full verses, where the gaps appeared in the lyric
In the act of singing John was a free spirit, I saw him pause in song , take a sip of guinness, a drag on his cigarette, and then continue with a variant of the melody..
Cecil would have turned in his grave
Good morning Christy,
I just got Mick Blake’s 6th sonnet, they just get better.
A latter day Heaney perhaps, the Nobels should be watching.
Ps Aye rebecca, in ‘dirty’ gala
Thanks for the nod towards Mick Blake’s Sonnet number 6
His work is so good…
the writing, delivery, accompaniment, camera work, editing,the timbre of his voice…it all gels together in the making…..a one man band of high degree
I hope he gains more viewers and listeners..over the past 10 years he has delivered aural and visual work of importance and of high standard…
The Battle of Evermore. I went looking. The ‘No Quarter’ 1992 DVD, a great ensemble accompany Plant and Page, strings, mandolin music to the fore, some bonga drums, Plant’s singing and then: “I’m waiting for the angels of Babylon/Waiting for the eastern glow.” That eastern glow was aural, the tones of one Najama Akhtar, a singer of British Indian roots, as she gives an eastern air to this work, the group already made up of a hurdy gurdy and a bodhran player. East meets west meets Irish, John Liverpool, we think we’ve found it, a Planxty imitation band doing the Battle of Evermore.
While we’re on Robert Plant’s musical collaborations, and in a week of mail being written, stamps being purchased, four stamp booklets being launched in the GPO, it’s apt to quote lines, another song and this time a Robert Plant/Alison Krauss collaboration: “Please read the letter that I wrote…..”
over 50 years ago I let the hair down to them boys…rushin round the mosh pit..Camerons strong arm and jazz woodbines…like a dirty lookin up all night with no bell on me bike…such sweet noise
Is there a specsavers near you Rory?
Christy your message yesterday fair cheered me up, it is great to know that no matter how incoherent ,all our ramblings are welcome.
Yesterday ,and the chat on here, set me back into the land of Boyle, County Roscommon.
I imagined how John Reilly would rarely have left the area over which his cart could take him , or round where he could tinker some tin.
However this is a man whose art is now renowned the world over ,thanks largely to the good work of you and a few like minded souls spreading the word.
As i took out the intended’s dog for it’s morning stomp around the trees, John sang to me of walking in a summer’s morning down by the green bushes.
When i was between MH Tribunal hearings he sang of the Captain and his love in the asylum.
As i was getting texts later about our racehorse shares, he was singing about giving away his 2 racehorses and 2 greyhounds.
When the bidie-in scolded me rightly,in the evening, to finally finish the ceremony music ,there was John reminding me that there would be no better song to end with than Adieu unto all true lovers.
I would probably never have heard of the small but great man if it had not been for you, thanks.
…but i wish i knew what a Rozzin box is ?
Ps am away to eat the 3 marrow bones she has baked for my supper
“she took the black bottle to me”
According to Wikipedia, ‘The Well…..’ LP was recorded at Escape Studios, Kent in the last 2 weeks of June, 1973…so, definitely, Jeff Beck country.
Tensions in the band…I’m sure you don’t miss those…our humble duo had brief expansions – very enjoyable as they were short term projects on a semi pro basis. Fred and I could travel the world in harmony, but not sure that could expand any further, for too long. There’s probably a scientific formula about it (that I wouldn’t understand…)In the meantime, I’m reminded of Dave Pegg’s quip, explaining Richard Thompson’s exit from Fairport Convention –
‘musical differences…he was musical – we were different’ – love it…
Enjoy the day
How are you? How are the songs? I’m humming my way round a couple of Jimmy Macs here.
Hello Christy and All,
Bang! This place just exploded into a kaleidoscope of colour. Like Shane’s madness crawling down the mountain. Thankyou so much Christy for letting the musician out so we could meet him. Layers and layers and there it is. So beautiful. Like learning a song and one day finding the essence of it.
When I was a student we were asked to think about what the relationship is between written music and a performance. At the time, I came up with some pretentious shite and felt quite proud of myself. But it’s something I’ve thought about repeatedly over the years, and more recently, what’s the relation ship between a performance and a recording.
I’ve still no idea.
The only recording I’ve done has been with a mobile phone. You have no control over it and you get whatever it picks up. Even so, the results can be pretty weird. Phrasing I didn’t know that I did, and every day I listen back and it sounds different. Sometimes radically different. I’m rarely happy with it. With this way, the only thing I can change is my intention and idea.
I’m trying to imagine having the level of control you described. I can’t, it’s overwhelming. And it’s got something to do with the relationship between a performance and a recording. I’m starting to wonder if there isn’t one.
On my phone there’s lots of great editing stuff you can do with photos. I have a photo that I took of St Anne’s Street ? In Dublin. I’ve worked on that picture a lot. It’s now a lovely warm sepia with some colours peeping through. There are two red neon signs that I want to make pop out. But I can’t. The software, or my skill, won’t do it.
I’m going to stop now. I could probably go on all day.
Many thanks for such an insightful reply to my curiosity about the recording process.
Playing (and,I suppose recording) music certainly is a magical process.I’ve never been in a studio, but totally relate to the way songs evolve (in my case, ‘ She moved through the fair’ comes to mind)and hang in the air after the first time they’re played to the performers’ satisfaction…nothing quite like it.
Also, there’s the ‘mojo’ of the song – specifically, when passed on by such a genius as John ‘Jacko’ Reilly. I didn’t realise his skill for many years, but the impact of Planxty’s ‘The well below the valley’ knocked me for six.A friend bought the LP in Ireland and removed the pristine vinyl from her case on arrival back here – I admired the artwork for hours, before getting near a turntable. For days, the title song captivated me via it’s dark magic. I was familiar with some big ballads by then, but Planxty’s arrangement carried the menace and drama of the song so well – and that was a half century ago…
Now we eagerly await the forthcoming album.There’ll be more songs to unpick and captivate us – fair play to you for the skill of your interpretations and passing on the songs. It’ll be worth the efforts – the roots are in your travels, your life and latterly, workroom,slaving over a hot Atkin…
Time for a cuppa – have a great day.
that 2nd Planxty album was recorded in an English studio…cant remember the exact location ….Jeff Beck may have been connected..I recall him dropping by one day…..cracks were beginning to emerge in the band….it was becoming difficult….
there is a dark atmosphere in that song (The Well) that emerges every time it is aired
Good morning Christy,
The Crows outside are making some din, not quite a dawn chorus more an awakening sqwauk. Last night the Swifts were screaming around the houses, either in delight at rich pickings or in exasperation at the lack of air. Both wonderful, natural sounds, if not quite the skylark.
I was listening to Prosperous yesterday, and reading your exchange with Dave resonated about the green laurel, as on Locke Hospital there are mentions of white laurel. Whilst digging about the song’s possible origins i see such a hospital was situated in Donnybrook to treat venereal disease of all things.
Anyway i am just rambling, i suppose it is early enough to be making much sense. I shall perhaps return later when the brain is in gear and the mug of black tea is cooling the brow.
when I created this site, its primary purpose was to gain access to the ramblings of songsters….those of you who scrape below the surface of these old songs….we are a rare breed…the odd time we meet conditions are usually unsuitable for such discourse…( gigs,stage doors,outside chippers, Grafton St, air terminals, ferryports, chiropodist’s waiting rooms, bookies stands at obscure race meetings) since I gave up riding high stools I’ve relied upon these ramblings to find different perspectives, its ( mostly) comforting to hear the ramblings of you 4711ers…….I like a strong brew myself Rory…I boils it up early , a big pot, and then I re-boils it across the day, I pours my final geowl after dinner (at tea-time) ,by which time ’tis dark brown, a mouse could trot across the heavy brew, …..you’re meanderings are always welcome here
Fascinating to get your take on recordings,Christy…I hope the new song works out as you envisage it. Also, if you have time, I’m very curious to know more about what you feel are the shortcomings on ‘Green grows the laurel’. There’s nothing quite like an artist’s insight into their work. Since first hearing ‘Lily’,I’ve thought it’s one of your best songs.
Good news arrives from Fairport acres…in lieu of their Cropredy festival being canned for the 2nd consecutive year, the band is filming a live set, to be shown on youtube on 14/8/21…last year’s version was superb, as the filming was brilliant, by the crew who do a live feed to the festival site screens in normal times).
Last, but not least, Fairport Convention playing a gig for the first time in aeons…replacing The Waterboys at Wickham Festival on Sunday 8/8/21…great news for anyone with access to rural Hampshire – it’s a fab,marquee based site, with a brilliant PA and catering etc.I was last there in 2015 – highlight being an afternoon featuring Roy Bailey, Martin Carthy and Luka Bloom…finished off with a very pleasant chat with Luka in the merch tent- happy days.
If any readers here get to Wickham, have a curry for me and post a Fairport review here- thanks!
Phew- what a scorcher…
its a strange thing Dave but I think you’ll understand….
I vividly remember recording Green Laurel in 2015 or 16….it was intense, satisfying, enjoyable…I was chasing a feeling, a sound, and everyone concerned was supporting me…each one trying to help me find the key to the impossible…..when it was recorded and mixed I was happy with the result…..then when the album arrived I listened again and liked it………..then 5 years elapsed during which I’ve sung it occasionally ,usually to myself here in the workroom….then your post came in yesterday and I decided to give it a listen again on Lily…I’m still very happy to have recorded “Green Grows The Laurel (aka The Ships Captain) but on hearing it again I was slightly unsettled by it…..some of my phrasing, aspects of the accompaniment….I believe its partly to do with passing years ( ears !!) …….its why singing live is so special…when its done its done..never to be heard again as only the memory reverberates……..
I’m back at it all again here, listening and re listening to mixes of 12 tracks….a little less of this ,a little more of that….
Hope all is well in your corner of the world. I’m not built for this warm weather.
Been meaning to ask you for ages. How did you get into lilting?
Years upon years listening to Reels,jigs,polkas, slow airs…not being able to play them, just listening and gradually lilting, diddling the melodies…..hearing countless players wherever my journey took me…the melodies learned by osmosis
row dill dum de da de diddle e eye dill dump de da dill….the opening line of “The Sligo Maid” but people can lilt with their own die dills
Waking up to interesting /praising reviews of Dylan’s streamed gig… and thinking of crossovers in music – and, how beneficial they are.
Folk rock was a huge move for many of us – your music/stories from ‘Moving Hearts’ are integral to your overall music.More recently (and mentioned here)world music – some of the most interesting Anglo/Irish contributions featuring Robert Plant,Jah Wobble and Sinead O’Connor – all working with Justin Adams – a fascinating guy who’s well worth checking out – youtube and via http://www.justinadamsmusic.com
Have a good day – hope you’ve got the air con sorted for Atkin cooling in the workroom!
no a/c here but every window and door thrown open… so we gottaa nice breeze blowing through the rooms…
doing some final touches to the mixing,
I think I need to re-do the vocal on one track…I’m too soft, too laid back, I hear it now..I’m too “in awe” of the song, I need to attack it a bit, let the vocal out…
its been an ongoing problem for me….at gig time I feel no restraint when singing..in the studio I become very self aware, take no chances, my live approach makes for better performance…
Thanks of the “Justin Adams”..he certainly has been a busy man..his track record so diverse
Plant has worked with another female vocalist. Unsure is she Tunisian or Algerian.
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