Crafting Infinity is a multi-disciplinary collection of essays that investigates how aspects of traditional Irish culture have been revised, retooled, and repackaged in the interest of maintaining the integrity of Irish myth tales, artistic values, spiritual foundations, and historic icons. From perspectives on early Irish Christianity to national mythology, traditional Irish music, Irish history represented in film, literary inventiveness, and evidence of the Irish diaspora, this study examines how artists, writers, theorists, and emigrants from Ireland re-interpreted, and reshaped Irish traditions, often invoking Ireland’s relationship with other nations before it acquired independence. Because with each retelling of legend, reworking of musical styles, and recreating of historic events, there has been inventiveness and alterations, inconsistencies affirm that the continuators of Irish tradition both preserve and alter their source materials and reshape iconic figures. The end product of these endeavors is tantamount to infinity, for just as Standish O’Grady, William Butler Yeats, James Joyce, Elizabeth Bowen, Jennifer Johnston, and Edna O’Brien craft fiction or rewrite folklore, with Irish characters and themes, while borrowing from other cultural wellsprings (such as Orientalism or French design), so exporters of Irish art forms and dispositions towards musical style, nationalism, and spirituality necessarily reconfigure the original, as no tradition can remain pure indefinitely. Each facet of Irish culture takes on the quality of a Celtic knot, artistically infinite in its circular design, and indestructible in its universal presence and recognition. In Crafting Infinity, each contributor dismantles a quality of Irish history, culture, or the arts, revealing how a multiplicity of interpretations can be applied to Irish traditions.
This remarkable memoir of immigration and assimilation provides a rare view of urban life in Chicago in the late 1800s by a newcomer to the city and the Midwest, and the nation as well. Francis O'Neill left Ireland in 1865. After five years traveling the world as a sailor, he and his family settled in Chicago just shortly before the Great Fire of 1871. His memoir also brings to life the challenges involved in succeeding in a new land, providing for his family, and integrating into a new culture. Francis O Neill serves as a fine documentarian of the Irish immigrant experience in Chicago. "
The two southern most counties in Ireland, Cork and Kerry, have legendary music and dance traditions. on the border of these two counties, a rural area called Sliabh Luachra is especially well-known for its fiddle tunes and itinerant fiddle teachers. When speaking of this area's fiddle music, some describe a special lilt or backbeat, or they talk about the special role of set dances, but the most often expressed quality relates to the frequent use of slides and polkas. This book features transcriptions of 107 tunes as played by three of the region's most distinguished fiddlers: Pádraig O'Keeffe, Denis Murphy, and Connie O'Connell. Each fiddler is profiled, followed by a collection of meticulously transcribed tunes and annotations. an accompanying CD includes 30 of these tunes played solo by Connie O'Connell.
North American Fiddle Music: A Research and Information Guide is the first large-scale annotated bibliography and research guide on the fiddle traditions of the United States and Canada. These countries, both of which have large immigrant populations as well as Native populations, have maintained fiddle traditions that, while sometimes faithful to old-world or Native styles, often feature blended elements from various traditions. Therefore, researchers of the fiddle traditions in these two countries can not only explore elements of fiddling practices drawn from various regions of the world, but also look at how different fiddle traditions can interact and change. In addition to including short essays and listings of resources about the full range of fiddle traditions in those two countries, it also discusses selected resources about fiddle traditions in other countries that have influenced the traditions in the United States and Canada.
Focus: Irish Traditional Music is an introduction to the instrumental and vocal traditions of the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, as well as Irish music in the context of the Irish diaspora. Ireland's size relative to Britain or to the mainland of Europe is small, yet its impact on musical traditions beyond its shores has been significant, from the performance of jigs and reels in pub sessions as far-flung as Japan and Cape Town, to the worldwide phenomenon of Riverdance. Focus: Irish Traditional Music interweaves dance, film, language, history, and other interdisciplinary features of Ireland and its diaspora. The accompanying CD presents both traditional and contemporary sounds of Irish music at home and abroad.
The story of Irish music and its influence at home and overseas. Nuala O'Connor provides a superb account of the history of Irish music, from its origins in rural Irish communities to reinvention in America.
From the mythological harp of the Dagda to Riverdance, this concise history of Irish traditional music and dance explores a rich spectrum of historical sources and folklore. It uncovers the contribution of the Normans to Irish dancing, the rote of the music maker in Penal Ireland, and the popularity of dance tunes and set dancing from the end of the eighteenth century to the present. It also follows the music of the Irish diaspora from the music halls of vaudeville to the musical tapestry of Irish America today.