Thank you so much to David Game for your time and lovely tunes. Also a huge thanks to the Guildford Corner Store for the use of your back room to record in.
The tunes played in this episode are:
The Mountain Road (Trad)
The Rose in the Heather (Trad)
Paddy's Trip to Scotland (Trad)
Mullingar Races (Trad)
For more info on the Canberra Irish Club go here: https://www.irishclub.com.au/
For more info on Comhaltas Canberra go here: https://www.facebook.com/Comhaltas-Canberra-580450142467295/
I really love this conversation. We very easily found our way into the stuff that gets me going - the ephemeral nature of the experience of playing music, the naming and honoring of players we used to listen to, and - of all things - The Brass Fiddle.
I have no certain memory of how I came across that CD of Donegal fiddle music that we talk about. But on first listening to it, I remember I was blown away by its elemental nature. It's not just that the recordings are plain and true. It's that the playing itself is completely unfussy and unafraid. In fact, what it is, now that I think about it, is authentic. It IS what it is.
Doodley Doodley Dank is the Con Cassidy track David hums, I think. I thought I was cool having that rarity of a CD that I got from who knows where, but as if to prove our point about how you can get everything everywhere now, you can listen to The Brass Fiddle on Spotify. So I'm slightly less cool now. Anyway, check it out.
Since we started the Blarney Pilgrims, one of the revelations me and Darren have had is that the fiddle is an intensely physical instrument. The music is born of friction, which goes some way to explain the appeal of the instrument maybe, and the seemingly endless variety that's audibly apparent between different players. Even if they share the same background, draw on the same regional style of playing, no two people sound the same. And I wonder is it my imagination, or is the fiddle unique in how it allows players to express themselves with such individuality, because as Chris Fitzgerald says, playing it is a wrestling match. And then I wonder if other bowed instruments have the same quality. And I'm thinking about Jordi Savall, the amazing Catalan musician who plays the viola da gamba. If you've never heard that guy's music, you're missing out. His 1988 album Les Voix Humaines will blow your mind.
I was introduced to this by two great friends, Jon and Mary Pritchard, when they lived in London, I lived in Scotland and we would spend every weekend we could manage hanging around drinking, eating and just having a completely beautiful time. As I did with Darren at the Banjo Jamboree in Guildford, Victoria.
David, thanks for taking time out from the festival to talk to us.
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Till next time.
Darren & Dom