Are you an old fart?
I’m 41 but people tell me I don’t look a day over 56. [insert groaning emoticon here] People also tell me I’m fortunate to live in the Portland Oregon area with all its lively Irish music going on, which I guess is true, but something else I’ve noticed of late is that the average age of these musicianers seems to be early 40s; and what few younger musicians there are mostly seem to have arrived from other parts of the country, too. This makes me wonder about the future of the music around here; are people going to start playing music from the seat of their Hoveround Personal Mobility Vehicles someday?
Not that ITM being played by ancient people is anything new, but it seems like you should have a corresponding vanguard of youngsters taking up the stuff, which doesn’t seem to be happening around here. In the 90s the sessions seemed to mostly start up mid to late evening, too; now it’s at family-friendly hours, early as 3 in the afternoon.
Is your scene similarly greying? Anybody taking steps to rectify this situation? Davey Matthias, a guitarist who backs up Randall Bays, told me about how he and his fiddling wife do lots of free gigs just to get the word out about the music in the Carolinas, so there’s that. A friend was telling me about School of Music ran by Joanie Madden and Rose Flanagan in New Jersey, with something like 300 students - a regular college of ITM. Is that some CCE project?