Saturday, March 26, 2011

Aran Sweaters and Bright Lights!


Just saw this online article in the archives of Independent.ie dated Saturday, January 22 2011:

They wore Aran sweaters and sang the old ballads, popularised Irish music in the US and became "the best known Irishmen in the world" in 1961 when they performed to 84 million Americans on the Ed Sullivan Show.

Some even credit them as starting the Sixties folk revival; certainly Bob Dylan was a huge fan.

A crusade to bring Irish culture to the rest of the world. Sound familiar? Well you won't be surprised to learn then that the makers of Riverdance are working on a stage musical which will result in the music of the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem being heard once again on stages from Carnegie Hall to London's West End.

The Diary can reveal that Riverdance director John McColgan is developing a touring musical based on the life and times of the Irish folk legends who once entertained US President JFK.

"The Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem were the first rock and rollers. When you look into their story, it's incredibly fascinating.

"They made Irish ballads popular again but they were also poets and actors. They created a whole new folk movement in the Sixties and Bob Dylan famously said Liam Clancy was the best ballad singer he ever heard," John McColgan told The Diary this week. The co-creator of Riverdance said the stage musical he's developing around the ballad singers' story will be in the style of the hit musical Jersey Boys, which in words and song dramatised the true story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons.

"What we're hoping to do is a drama held together by song in the same way as Jersey Boys. We're only in the early stages of development but I'm very excited about it," added Mr McColgan. Working with the former RTé man on the project is director Alan Gilsenan who masterfully told the Clancy Brothers' story in his award-winning The Yellow Bittern in which he interviewed last surviving member Liam Clancy shortly before his death in December 2009.

The Diary hopes they can find room for Tommy Makem's name in the title of their new musical, because during his lifetime the banjo player had to endure US promoters' habit of putting only 'The Clancy Brothers' on their posters for reasons of space.
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I just hope this show sees its way to the New York stage!
We hope to see you at St. Stephen's Green on Sunday.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

St. Stephen's Green - Sunday, March 27


Join us for good food and good music. (6:00-9:00pm) We'll do lots of the old favorites and a dozen new tunes (new for us, anyway) as well. If we couldn't do your request for you the last time we were there, we have it ready for you this time. We hope to see you!

Friday, March 18, 2011

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Liz and I had a GREAT time playing at The Irish Rail yesterday. Lots of fun people having lots of fun. The four hours flew by. (Liz will post photos from yesterday on our Facebook page soon.) We will be at St. Stephen's Green on Sunday, March 27 (6:00-9:00). We'll do lots of the old favorites and many new tunes (for us, anyway) as well. If we couldn't do your request for you the last time we were there, we have it ready for you this time. We hope to see you there. Tell your friends. The more the merrier! :-)