Eoin's Blog: The Chieftains

[caption id="attachment_158" align="alignleft" width="150" caption="diary"]diary[/caption]Went into see the Chieftains play at the UL Concert Hall on Sunday night.  Last time I saw them I was in the front-row of the Waterfront hall in wee Belfast last year. Paddy Maloney - of the Chieftains - had called me up a couple of weeks before, asking me if I knew of any bodhran players who could sing.  I wracked my brain as fast as I could, a couple came to mind, I told Paddy I'd make a few calls and get right back to him.  There was one bodhran player on the last Beoga album that I had a suspicion might have sang on some of the tracks, so I called my bro to see if he was home to check out on the album sleeve.  "Hey mo, will you run down to the Kitchen and check if the bodhran player on the Beoga CD sings on any of the tracks.  Paddy Malony - of the Chieftains - they've played with the Stones you know - and Sting too - is looking for a singing bodhran player" - "Sure thing"- I hear him skipping down the four steps into the Kitchen, lightly swinging open the door, then, he stops.  There's a pause. - "Wait a minute", he says.  "I can sing and play bodhran".  There's a beat.  Then I realise,  "I call you back in five minutes", and I hang up the phone.

Fast-forward to the Waterfront Hall, October 2007.  Moleman smiling out from behind his little frame-drum, the very drum whose skin was cut from the carcus of one of goats we used to have in the front-field, Ba and Ma - we were never sure who was who - right there, up on the stage, beside the boys themselves, The Chietains.  Their opening set finishes to the rapturous applause of a sold-out house of 2,000 bums on seats.  Then my little bro steps up to mic for a little solo song.  You could hear the sound of an angel dancing on the head of pin.  Eventually to the finale, where MC Mole accompanies the lads on the mic doing beat-box.  Is this the first time that such stalwarts of Irish Traditional Music have been fused with elements from the hip-hop movement?  You'd have to address that question to Ireland's foremost and founding member of Irish Hip-hop Musicological Studies.