How does the rich repertoire and culture of ITM compare to other European countries traditional music culture?
I always wondered, how "exceptional" ITM is, compared to other European countries music. Do you think other countries had a similar size of repertoire and special playing techniques as Ireland, but over the 200 years or so much more went lost, compared to Ireland? Or has Ireland just always been more musical?
Or in other words: Where simple / poorer country folk people in England, Germany, etc. less involved in music than Irish people? Or had English or maybe German traditional music been a bit more connected to "classical" music than Irish music and therefore dance / traditional hadn’t been so special?
For example, when I went to a trip to county Clare, I felt like I knew the name of every second village or so from some tune name. Opposed to that, I rarely heard that small towns and villages in (my country) Germany have their "own" old tune(s), named after them.
Was that different 200 years ago and we simply lost most of the repertoire?
And even further, in Ireland it feels like every county has it distinct style of playing, has that been similar in other countries? I know that the Brittany has a music tradition, different to the rest of France, but i think that isn’t comparable, because Brittany is probably ethnically more different to other parts of France than most Irish counties are to each other.