Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A bit of Banter: 24- The City of Chicago

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’ coots gather together to make music? The next series of posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps, enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 24: The City of Chicago– Written by Christy Moore’s brother, Luka Bloom, this is a firm favourite among listeners. The Irish have many bastions in the US: Chicago, Boston, andchicago New York, to name just a few. And, as in England, the Irish were instrumental in building the infrastructure that helped propel the Industrial Age. As members, ourselves, of the Irish diaspora, songs like this have an added resonance for us.

 

The City of Chicago
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A bit of Banter: 23- The Hills of Kerry

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’ coots gather together to make music? The next series of posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps, enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 23: The Hills of Kerry– This song may be known by another name. Indeed, when we can’t recall the names of songs and tunes we are very likely to make up a title that seems to fit the song or the tune. The waltz time  and tempo here are very popular as vehicles forkerry songs and tunes that have a nostalgic cast to them. Of course, when we were younger and full of (supply here your own metaphor or idiom that characterises the energy and folly of youth) we tended not to feature so many of this type of song…

 

Hills of Kerry
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A bit of Banter: 22- The Lark in the Morning (instrumental)

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’ coots gather together to make music? The next series posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps, enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 22: The Lark in the Morning– There is a song with this title which we will get around to recording at some stage, but here is an instrumental that has the sort of energy we like and which always enlivens a session when we gather to bash a few numbers out, have a few soothing ales and shoot the breeze. Our fiddle player gives it some welly and we all charge in too. There is something particularly satisfying about playing Irish music at full tilt. jam

 

The Lark in the Morning (Instrumental)
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A bit of Banter: 21- Rhonda Valley Girls

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’ coots gather together to make music? The next 20 posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps, enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 21: Rhonda Valley Girls– A rousing songs about Welsh miners. We have seen the sad decline of old industries and processes over the past few decades and know all about the fate of once-proud workers in occupations who find themselves out of work or offered a rvgirlspaltry alternative in the casualised service sector. The election of Donald Trump is, like Brexit, a manifestation of the anger of these folk who have been waiting vainly for at least a generation for the elites to offer them something more than promises come election time.

 

Rhonnda Valley Girls
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A bit of Banter: 13- Paddy’s Green Shamrock Shore

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’ coots gather together to make music? The next 20 posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps, enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 13: Paddy’s Green Shamrock Shore– The songs of Irish emigration are legion. Before the Great Famine of the mid-19th Century, the Irish had a penchant for travel and this is reflected in the Brendan voyage and the travels of Irish monks across Europe in the Middle Ages. However, the famine forced millions off the land to starve in ditiches or seek refuge in America or Australia.The first memorable version of this song, for me, was sung by Paul Brady, in the 1970s, I think. This emigrant ballad exerts a strange but pbradycompelling pull on the listener when sung by a good singer. I would assert that this is the case here.

 

Paddy’s Green Shamrock Shore
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A bit of Banter: 14- Shoals of Herring

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’ coots gather together to make music? The next 20 posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps, enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 14: Shoals of Herring– The late, great Ewan McColl wrote this one. I was privileged toewan-mccoll hear him sing in the Wollongong Town Hall in the mid-1970s with his wife, Peggy Seeger. He wrote lots of fine songs about workers and the alienated. Perhaps the greatest exponent of this song was Luke Kelly of the Dubliners.

The Shoals of Herring (lockdown Outlaw Version)
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A Bit of Banter: 15- The Raggle Taggle Gypsy/The Battle of Aughrim

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’ coots gather together to make music? The next 20 posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps, enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 15: The Raggle Taggle Gypsies/ The Battle of Aughrim– I first sang this song in the folk group Seannachie over forty years ago. When Banter formed in the mid- 1990s, we thought the stirring march, The Battle of Aughrim, would complement it nicely. I do wonder, though, how many fine ladies in history have ever left the money, fine clothes  and privileges of wealth and rank in order to follow a gypsy into the privations of a traveller’s life….                                                         the-battle-of-aughrim-by-john-mulvany

 

The Ragglr Taggle Gypsy/The Battle of Aughrim
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A bit of Banter: 16- The Three Sea Captains

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’ coots gather together to make music? The next 20 posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps, enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 16: The Three Sea Captains– As I mentioned before, chimney sweeps are in my DNA but so, too, are sea captains. My father, grandfather and great-grandfather were all3seacapts captains at one time or another in their lives. This graceful Irish set dance reminds me of this part of my heritage.

 

The Three Sea Captains
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A bit of Banter: 17- Central Story/ The Hag at the Churn

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’ coots gather together to make music? The next 20 posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps, enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 17: Central Story/The Hag at the Churn– St Patrick’s Day used to be celebrated at a park near Central Station and I enjoyed it much more that the subsequent ordered and orderlychurn version that saw it contained within a secured site. This song celebrates a time about twenty years ago when we were rather younger and wilder. The instrumental at the end I initially thought was entitled The Goose in the Bog– I wonder what rhymed line I would have come up with if I had known the accurate title when writing the song…

 

Central Story/The Hag at the Churn
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A bit of Banter: 18- Ride On

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’  coots gather together to make music? The next 20 posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps,  enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 18: Ride On– Written by Jimmy McCarthy, noted Irish songwriter, this song has been a favourite of the band since we first heard Christy Moore sing it. Although it is short, it is memorable and is often requested when we make one of our rideonsporadic appearances in public out here on the fringes of Western Sydney.

 

Ride On
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A Bit of Banter: 19- Sam Hall/ The Palmer River Song

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’  coots gather together to make music? The next bunch of posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps,  enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 19: Sam Hall/ The Palmer River Tune– This song has been in my repertoire for decades and when I discovered that there were chimney sweeps in my ancestry it made sense at a deep, even DNA, level. The song is twinned with a great Aussie tune from the gold-rushpalmer-river days in Far Northern Queensland.

 

Sam Hall/The Palmer River Song
Categories
Banter II Songs and Tunes

A bit of Banter: 20- William Bloat/ The Sash

a-muso-imageThere’s no fool like an old fool, they say, so what happens when a bunch of oul’  coots gather together to make music? The next 20 posts may enlighten you as to the question just posed and may also, perhaps,  enrage or entertain. Anything’s better than a yawn, I guess. These songs were the result of a few sessions around a table laden with alcoholic beverages of various kinds. Plonked in the centre of the table was a laptop with built-in mic that somehow survived the knocks and spillages that were part and parcel of the sessions. 

Song 20: William Bloat/Sash– Belfast built the Titanic and was also a centre for the flax industry in the 19th Century. The song is a humorous boast concerning a man having a spot of trouble with his wife. We twin it with a tune beloved of Orange folk. Belfast was one of the great industrial cities of the British Isles in the 19th Century and, like other manufacturing centres, there was a great pride taken in the quality of goods produced in the city.sash

 

William Bloat/The Sash