Irish music is quite distinctive and it has influenced different genres in the states. It travelled to the YOU in the 1800s when thousands of people emigrated to Chicago, Boston and New York as a result of famine and deprivation in Eire.
Irish music tells the story from the people in good times and in bad. There was an excellent collection brought out about two decades ago entitled “Bringing It All Home: The Influence of Irish Music ” which contained use many of the Irish songs that were popularised in American Culture including Kilkelly, The Lakes of Pontchertain and Sonny. Kilkelly is one of your saddest songs ever written comprising letters coming from a father to his son within England starting in 1860 to see him the news about deaths from the family and saying how good it would be to see the son yet again.
Irish music was revived in america in the 1960s by your Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem having songs like Will Ye Proceed Lassie Go and Roddy Mc Corley. In fact the Clancy Brothers were an influence on the young Bob Dylan ‘s folk singing style. The following instruments are often used in Irish traditional songs – fiddle, guitar, uileann pipe joints, accordion (piano or button, bodhran, flute, tin whistle, harp and possibly piano. For me one of the most wonderful sounds is the voice : Sean Keane singing Ellis Area or Sinead O Connor performing from her 2002 album Sean Nos Nua. Sean nos refers to the traditional Irish way of singing to create comhaille.
In the 1970s groups similar to Planxty and Clannad emerged with Clannad singing from the Irish language. I spent several summers in the Loch a great Iuir Gaeltacht in County Donegal and Clannad actually performed for the students in the college while i was there. I was only about 11 at that time – Teach Leo where that they been brought up was directly about 4 miles away in Crolly. I remember they were good – this became before Enya achieved massive world-wide acclaim with her album Watermark.
My spouse and i played the violin and piano myself but I learned conventional music at school. My grandaddy, James Eddie Mc Cluskey from County Monaghan played the fiddle and he taught me some Irish tunes – The Boys from the Bluehill and The Dawning from the Day. He always talked about “An Chualainn” which i have just been able to find played on-line. The wonders of modern engineering!
Traditional Irish music has also been fused with rock and roll and this started in your 1970s with Horslips, Thin Lizzy, The Pogues and Rory Gallagher – probably the most famous recent songs is Fairytale of Big apple which Shane Mc Gowan primary performed with Kirsty Mc Coll within 1987. U2, Van Morrison, The Cranberries and The Corrs are all groups which are very successful in recent decades.