Traditional Music in Co. Clare
Many people in County Clare, as children, are brought into Custy’s Traditional Irish Music shop to choose their first instrument. For some it may be a tin whistle, a fiddle or perhaps an accordion.
Most people start off with the tin whistle as it is cheaper and most primary schools in Clare teach this as a subject. Some people then like to progress onto more difficult instruments, concertinas, fiddles, or even flutes.
County Clare has been known as the home of Traditional music, this due to the annual calendar of festivals throughout the county. The traditional music season starts in Clare in february and goes on until end of october. It kicks off with The Russell Memorial Weekend in Doolin. This festival is just the first piece in a symphony of festivals that are to be put on in various towns around the county, from Feakle to Kilfenora to Kilkishen.
Some of these festivals include the Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy, which is a week-long summer school in traditional music and set dance held annually at Miltown Malbay, at the start of July.
Another is the Crotty Galvin Weekend, this is a wonderful weekend in Moyasta to celebrate the legacy of three amazing musicians Ellen Nell Galvin, PJ Crotty and Peadar Crotty.
This weekend is held annually at the start of September. For musicians and music enthusiasts, the year is anything but boring in Co. Clare.
For the weekends that have no festivals on, many pubs throughout the county have weekly or even daily sessions. Some of these pubs are very famous for their sessions, with pubs such as O’Connor’s pub in Doolin, Friel’s in Miltown Malbay or Crotty’s bar in Kilrush being particularly popular.
Speaking to the manager of Friel’s in Miltown Malbay, he said that the love of traditional music is still strong in West Clare, and indeed throughout the world. His business has greatly benefited from this and continues to do so to this day.
“Miltown Malbay is blessed with many talented musicians so we would have a lot of local musicians playing every weekend however we would also get some great musicians coming from all parts of Ireland for a few nights throughout the year as they love to travel to Miltown because of its famous tradition with Irish music and because Friel’s is famous for traditional music we get a lot of tourists coming in to play too throughout the year to play with some of their favorite musicians. There is a great mix, no night is ever the same.”
Despite Irish language and culture fading away, according to the media, it is obvious that there is still a strong hunger for traditional music.
(From NOTES STILL HEARD IN WEST CLARE by Aisling Healy)
Raidió Corca Baiscinn
The community radio for South-West Clare
- A list of Music events throughout the year in Co.Clare - click here
Some Weblinks to Clare Music
- Traditional Pubs in West Clare
Pubs with traditional Music Sessions
- The Kilfenora Ceili Band
The Ceili Band from Kilfenora is with 100 years of tradition
- Feakle Traditional Music Festival
Festival in August
- Fleadh Nua Ennis
Music throughout town!
- Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy Miltown Malbay
Irelands best known music school, in early July
- Nell Galvin, Moyasta
- Willie Keane Memorial Weekend Doonbeg
Our big local Music festival