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Traditional Music: The Music of the People

A set of reels recorded for the fleadh program in Cavan 2012. Thanks to Brian Cunningham for sharing this video.

We can’t deny that traditional music is the music of communion. Be it Irish, Scottish, Welsh, Breton or any music of the seven Celtic nations, there is always that sense of community whenever one goes to these sessions. Unlike the ‘star versus the spectator’ culture of pop music, Celtic music encourages the audience to participate-be it dancing or playing. It is after all the music of the people.

As someone who is trying to learn how to play traditional Irish music instruments, I feel that sense of connection to the culture through these instruments. As if the music is telling me that it doesn’t matter if I am no expert but to play is to be part of something timeless.

My bodhran and tin whistle.

My bodhran and tin whistle.

I think there are more and more music schools being built and organized because the demand to learn traditional music is increasing. People can just buy a bodhran, Celtic harp, tin whistle or fiddle from ebay.  Everything you need is there. You just have to know where to look. Even youtube offers free lessons. You just have to be enthusiastic enough to learn how to play.

Jeremy King of Poitin mentioned that his son is learning the accordion at such an early age. I mentioned in my previous post that there seems to be a resurgence of interest in the accordion. Scottish singer/harpist Anna McLuckie has wowed the mainstream audience with her unique performance of a mainstream tune. People now know that her musical upbringing is rooted in traditional music.

As I have mentioned above, traditional music is the music of the people. Wherever you are in the world, when it touches you, then you belong.

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2 thoughts on “Traditional Music: The Music of the People

  1. You are so right. But also, it’s of the pain and joy and can touch and bring people in. But if the tune and the words are true, it also helps them want to feel those feelings. Lovely thoughts, Bax.

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