Thursday, 28 May 2015

Laban Traditional Music Photo Collection now online

Peter Laban is a photographer and piper living in Miltown Malbay, County Clare. He has been photographing musicians in Clare since the late 1980s. Peter’s special areas of interest are pipers, concertina players and the Willie Clancy Summer School, which he has been documenting for many years. Many of the musicians photographed are well known, but many local musicians, not known outside their own areas, are also included. The Laban Traditional Music Photo Collection is an outstanding record of the people at the heart of the vibrant traditional music scene in Clare. The first batch of the collection can be viewed on Foto, Clare County Library's online image collection here:

Image above shows Maeve Donnelly, Séamus Begley, John Weir and Eithne Ní Dhonaile in Friel's Pub (Lynch's) at the Willie Clancy Summer School 2010

Enduring Children’s Classics - The Very Hungry Caterpillar and We’re Going on a Bear Hunt

Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Michael Rosen’s We’re Going on a Bear Hunt have achieved UK book trade “Evergreen” status. This means they have never fallen out of Total Consumer Market’s Top 5000 since records began. When asked about the popularity of The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eric Carle had the following to say: “I believe most children can identify with the helpless, small, insignificant caterpillar and they rejoice with it when it turns into a beautiful butterfly. I think it’s a message of hope. It says: I too can grow up. I too can unfold my wings-my talent-and fly into the world.”

Michael Rosen attributes the longevity of We’re Going on a Bear Hunt to two things going on in the book; “a chant about getting home that children can learn very quickly because of the repetition in the text; and the fact that Helen Oxenbury has taken that and created a family dilemma with an intriguing family group that draws children in.” The Bookseller 06.02.15I

Both picture books are consistently borrowed in their many different formats from Clare County Library branches.

Friday, 22 May 2015

Martin Hayes & Dennis Cahill playing "Ryan's Rant" on WTJU, USA

"Legendary duo Martin Hayes & Dennis Cahill stopped by the WTJU studios, [Charlottesville, Virginia, USA], on March 21, 2015 for a visit before a concert in town presented by the Blue Ridge Irish Music School (BRIMS). Here they perform "Ryan's Rant." Posted on Youtube on the 6th of May 2015 by WTJU Charlottesville.

Boston TV Channel Five visits Doolin in the mid 1980s, featuring Micho Russell, Eoin O Neill, Kevin Griffin, Niall Sheedy and more

"Boston TV Channel Five visits Doolin, County Clare, in the mid 80's. Mc Gann's pub featuring, Micho Russell, Eoin O Neill, Kevin Griffin, Niall Sheedy, (German Fiddle player Mick Koppel) Gerry (Buddy) Flanagan, Brud Petty (with his pipe) Johnny O Brien, Mary Shannon, Helen Browne, Tony Mc Gann, Gerry Howard, John Flaherty, and others." posted on Youtube on the 17th of May 2015 by doolinmusic.

The Laird of Drumblair set - Edel Fox in Glasgow with Simon Thoumire & Tom Orr

County Clare's Edel Fox with Simon Thoumire & Tom Orr playing The Laird of Drumblair set on a visit to Glasgow. From the TG4 series Port - An Braon Breise. Posted on Youtube on the 7th of April 2015 by webfilmmager.

Los Paddys de Las Pampas playing "Little Bridget Flynn" in Ennistymon Courthouse Studio

"Little Bridget Flynn" performed by County Clare's Los Paddys de Las Pampas in Ennistymon Courthouse Recording Studio. Posted on Youtube on the 5th of October 2014 by Paddy Mulcahy.

The Riches of Clare with Neil O'Loghlen, Liam Ryan, Finola Ryan, and Eoin O'Neill, 20th May 2015

"Neil O'Loghlen, Liam Ryan, Finola Ryan, and Eoin O'Neill performing at The Riches of Clare concert series as part of Fleadh Nua, May 20, 2015". Posted on Youtube on the 222nd of May 2015 by Niamhaines.

Play That Funky Music by Mustang Hobo at Pepper’s Mountain Hop in Feakle

East Clare band Mustang Hobo playing Wild Cherry's 1976 hit "Play That Funky Music" at The Mountain Hop in the marquee at Pepper's Bar, Feakle, County Clare, April 2015. Posted on Youtube on the 6th of May 2015 by Mustang Hobo.

Susan Fennell (1812-1909) – Ennis & Kilbaha

Susan Fennell (1812-1909) was the daughter of Thomas Pilkington (1784-1838) of Cragleigh, Ennis. She married Timothy Haier, an Ennis shopkeeper and had three children whose baptisms are registered in the Ennis R.C. parish records in the 1840s. She married secondly in the Ennis Church of Ireland church in 1850 to William Reynolds, a baker. The family may have gone to America then. Susan reappears in the 1860s at Kilbaha with her two sons. She is the Susan Haier "known locally as Siobhan Pilkington" mentioned in an account by Mathúin Mac Fheorais ( of the Fenian uprising in Kilbaha in 1867. She ran the shop and pub later known as The Lighthouse Inn at Kilbaha. She married for a third time, to Mathias Fennell, a Kilbaha river pilot. Susan died in 1909 at Kilbaha, aged c. 97. Her photo (above) from c.1900 appears in the Pilkington, Griffin,Keane Collection in Foto, Clare County Library's online images collection, and her complex family connections were the topic of some posts on the Clare Past forum some time ago (

Thursday, 21 May 2015

Artist David Gilhooley & Author Philip Shepherd at Scariff Library

Renowned artist David Gilhooley held an Introduction to Watercolour Painting class in Scariff Public Library on Tuesday, 19th May 2015 as part of the Bealtaine Festival. This was a free event but places were limited to ten. Those who had signed up in time were in for a treat. David provided expert tuition in a relaxed, informal manner. The class was guided in a simple, easy to follow and straightforward method. Feedback from the class was very positive.

Philip Shepherd, author of New Self, New World, visited Scariff Public Library on Tuesday evening 19th May 2015 to offer an insight into his work. Philip’s talk on ‘Radical Wholeness’ explained how we are taught from childhood that mind and body are separate which makes us disconnected, anxious and off-balance. Philip teaches how to ground us in the present and provide us with the tools to last a lifetime.