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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,Brían Help: Effect of Famine on Irish Folk Music (10) RE: Help: Famine 20 Apr 01

I n the "road from Connemara" songs and stories told by Seosamh Ó hÉanaí, Joe claims that the area he grew up in, Carna on the west coast of Ireland was so rich in song because that was where all the starving people who took to the roads ended up. They would stop at a house for afew days and trade stories and songs. One can't estimate the loss of oral song and literature. The Gaeilgeóirí (Gaelic speakers) were the group which suffered the worst in the famine.Famine (from famina < latin for hunger). The Irish called it An Gorta Mór(The Great Hunger) in their own toungue. Its causes like contemporary famines were not were not rooted in lack of food. Christy Moore in a performance of "The City of Chicago" recites a list of the amazing volume and array of food exported from Ireland at the very height of the famine. See the novel, "Famine by Liam O'Flaherty for a moving portrayal of how the famine affected one family and the systems and institutions it came in conflict with. One example of how the famine affected irish music is the book "O'Neill's Music of Ireland. This is the book tireless collector and lecturer Harry Bradshaw referred to as "The Bible" for traditional musicians.This book was actually published in America from tunes collected from irish musicians living in Chicago.

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