Monday, August 4, 2008

Folk, Folkies, and the Irish at Dublin Ohio Festival

Folk, Folkies and the Irish, at Dublin Ohio Festival.

Dublin Ohio festival is now the second biggest Irish Festival in the World. Official.

The question is where do you start? There is so much good about this festival it is difficult to know. Just when you think they have it exactly right they make a minor change and you think wow what a difference. They say a camel is a horse designed by a committee, someone forgot to tell the Dublin Festival Committee, because they do an amazing job. As well as seven major music stages all going at once there is an abundance of vendors, displays, exhibits, workshops and cultural activities.
To the entertainment.

There are two bands I will refrain from saying much about because I am more then a little bias. Knot Fibb'n and Vinegar Hill. Suffice to say, unadulterated foot tapping, hand clapping, singing at the top of your voice fun. Say no more.
I will single out one group as a must see because they are staggering to listen to, there is so much energy coming from Bridgets Cross it is scary. If they are in your area SEE THEM.
New Bands to me.
Bad Haggis: There rendering of heavy folk music is good, a very tight band, the only criticism would be to much lead on the pipes.
Evens and Doherty: Great stuff, sit back and enjoy.
Makem and Spain brothers: Seen the Makems before of course, but not with the Spains. Once again sit and enjoy music.

Drowsy Lads: Good music from a young group. (Everyone looks young to me.)
Sue Mogan and Kevin Sutton: Another must see, great vocals from both, if these are playing local I will be there.

Special Mention of a Seen Before.
Mossey Moran: Here is a man with the ability to follow bands on stage and stand alone with his guitar and raise the bar. Good Strong voice, confident guitar and the stage presents to get the crowd on his side. Go Mossey.

Old Goodies.

Always good for tight, foot tapping music:

Prodicals, Ladies of Longford, Homeland, Hooligans, Two to Many.

Spoken Word.

I am always reluctant to say to much when I am involved myself. I am so keen on this part of the folk arts I worry about going over the top.

Storytelling. Local Tellers were in evidence and gave excellent performances. Kathy Joe Smith, Melanie Pratt, Michael O'Malley. I have seen these tellers time and again and never get tired of hearing them. What I find interesting, and I am sure they will agree with me, is the number of grown ups who frequent the Wee Folk Area to listen to the tellers. I think the new position of the Spoken Word tent help with audience numbers. I had a very good crowd on Sunday and had a great time. I only hope the audience enjoyed it.

I have to mention the dancers. Always good fun to watch. It is nice when a band is playing and people will get up from the audience and dance to the music. Including Joyce O'Neil the mother of Tim O'Neil singer with Knot Fibb'n. She does a great job for someone who has been Irish Dancing for only a couple of years.

Big Names.

Patrick Street, Andy Irvine, Tannahill Weavers. Household names in the UK and Ireland. I saw Patrick Street for the first time way back in the eighties, I think it was not long after they started as a group. They had been known individually for some time before that. I had the impression that Andy Irvine was tired, it seemed to be a lack luster performance.

I hope I have not bored you with the above. If you disagree with me, or would like to add more leave a comment.

I had a great three days, roll on next year.

1 comment:

cindy said...

Me too! I love that festival so much. I was only able to attend on Friday and Sunday, but my heart is lifted and my soul is happy with all the great music I heard. I saw both Patrick Street and the Tannahill Weavers twice, because they're both long-time favorites. I would have watched them twelve times if they'd played that many.... Really enjoyed the Yankee Celtic Consort, and General Guinness Band. GGB's new album is really, really nice! Also enjoyed Vishten, the Makem Spain Brothers, and some others. Thank God the good folks at DIF book lots of good, acoustic, traditional music as well as the rocky stuff. Bless 'em. Can't wait until next year!!! Cindy Funk