Recording of young visually-impaired Irish musicians?

Recording of young visually-impaired Irish musicians?

Hi all,

I remember that some time ago, someone submitted a recording of young visually-impaired Irish musicians. As a blind person myself, I’m very interested to find the listing, but can’t for the life of me remember what it was called. Might one of you fellow Sessioners be so kind as to direct me to it, if this rings a bell for you? Thanks very much in advance!

Re: Recording of young visually-impaired Irish musicians?

Thanks both. Keep ‘em coming, people. @AB it’s pretty amazing how many historical figures in Irish music were blind, from O’Carolan to Garrett Barry, isn’t it?

Re: Recording of young visually-impaired Irish musicians?

> it’s pretty amazing how many historical figures in Irish music were blind

It was quite common at one time for young blind people to be trained in music, as it was one of the few relatively reliable livings that could be earned without sight back then.

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Re: Recording of young visually-impaired Irish musicians?

The two Rory Dall’s, (Dall - blind) both harpers, one from Ireland and one from Dunvegan, Skye. The Irish Rory Dall, Ruaidhrí Dall Ó Catháin, (O’Kane) is supposedly buried in Sleat, Skye. At that time, the 1600’s, the sharing of music between Scotland and Ireland was apparently commonplace. Ironic now how many knickers get in a twist if someone posts a Scottish tune on thesession.org.

Re: Recording of young visually-impaired Irish musicians?

@Tony Wow! Never knew about Josie. Obviously I know some of his music but never knew he was blind. I did know that Roscommon-born piper Johnny Gorman was blind - there are a few barndances and reels named after him on here. He also is the ultimate source of several tunes including that 12-part monster of a reel called either "Michael Gallagher’s Fancy" or "The Wise Maid". It was recorded under the latter name by Sligo fiddler Johnny Henry on his album "One Out of the Fort" and it is posted here in the database under the former title.

Re: Recording of young visually-impaired Irish musicians?

Josie is didn’t lose his sight until his late 30s from eczema and was already a skilled musician when this happened, but he continued to play traditional music on flute, whistle and jaw’s harp, and also trumpet, tenor and alto saxophones in local jazz bands.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x_tlmEeRpoE


John Loughran of County Tyrone (who features in ‘The Northern Fiddler’) had his eyesight seriously damaged in his teens, but it didn’t stop ‘the fiddler of Pomeroy’, as he was known, from travelling the country widely to attend festivals and get-togethers. Here he is at a session on his home turf in 1985.

https://youtu.be/sy0sbhO253w

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Re: Recording of young visually-impaired Irish musicians?

And Johnny Gorman. I just got back from an excellent memorial for him in Drumshanbo, Co. Leitrim. His influence is very much alive and well and it’s great to see him being celebrated by local musical families and pipers from around the country.