Fifteen comments

Murphy Roche’s session at the Kerry Piper

This is a *very* friendly session, very open to newcomers and beginners, but not a "slow session". It’s done by the Murphy Roche Irish Music Club, a local branch of CCE. It happens from 8 to 10 PM, on Wednesdays, at the Kerry Piper (an Irish pub at about where Routes 83 and 55 meet); i’m there almost every week.

Don’t forget to check out the Web pages (, especially the parts about etiquette, musician guidelines, and resources.

Kerry piper session

Definitely not a beginners session, but a really great group of people. They made me feel extremely welcome and went out of their way to play some tunes a bit slower just so that I could play along. It was wonderful!

Irish Disneyland

When is the ownership going to replace its logo with a photograph of the real Tom Carthy, for whom the pub is named?

The present logo (used on menus and decorative glasswork throughout the pub) appears to be based on an historic photo of an Italian zampognari or bagpiper. The zampogna is a mouthblown instrument (Tom Carthy played Uilleann pipes, which are bellows-blown), with two chanters and two to four drones. The bag is usually quite large. A great instrument and very beautiful to hear when played well.

I won’t even get into the romanticized claptrap about Tom on the menu. It’s an insult to him, his music, irish pipers, and authentic rural irish culture, period. It’s also an insult to my Italian bag squeezing friends.

Irish Disneyland

Gee, i don’t know. Why don’t you ask them? 🙂

Thanks for the information about the U.P., though. I had no idea they were a great instrument and very beautiful to hear when played well.

Now shut up and play.

Not Going To Shut Up Because They’re Wrong!!!!!

Okay, here is a page from the pub’s website w/logo and the BS story on the menu:

Here is a page devoted to the Italian instrument depicted in the pub’s logo:

Here is a page with pictures of the kind of instrument that Tom Carthy actually played (The Irish or Union pipes, more recently callled Uilleann pipes):

Here is a page with numerous photos depicting various uilleann pipers in action. Note that the performers are SEATED:

Finally, it is well-known that Tom was BLIND from a young age. None of that romantic claptrap about him playing his pipes on the sea cliffs contains even a whiff of truth. Don’t believe me? Check O’Neills "Irish Minstrels and Musicians" published in 1913.

The point is that the TRUTH is much more interesting than the hype, so why not tell the truth? It wouldn’t involve a lot of homework.

Anyway, none of this has anything to do with the session itself. I won’t say anything about it since I don’t attend it.

And another thing…

Hey I know you’re only out for a pint and some craic, and I know the publicans are only out to make a buck or two.

I just HATE seeing someone so inspiring, so dogged and so talented as Tom Carthy, a contemporary of Garrett Barry, Edward Fraher, James Bourke, Edmund Keating Hyland, Maurice O’Farrell, Paddy Conneely, etc., one of a handful of pipers who kept the tradition alive through the worst of the 19th century’s upheavals, treated this way. He deserves better.

Tell all the Truth but tell it slant—-

Success in Circuit lies
Too bright for our infirm Delight
The Truth’s superb surprise
As Lightning to the Children eased
With explanation kind
The Truth must dazzle gradually
Or every man be blind—-
—Emily Dickinson

A Great Group Of People

I just was in Chicago on business, and dropped by this session. It was great. A lot of players of all ages and abilities, all having a great time sharing tunes. This is what a session should be! Thanks to all for the hospitality!

Finall K.P. Session

I don’t know the details, but the final Kerry Piper session for Murphy Roche is tonight (Dec 28, 2005). There will be a new venue for 2006; i will post it here when i find out which.


The Kerry Piper sesh is no more. I changed this entry to point to the new location (Rafferty’s).

No more

I believe Murphy Roche is not at Rafferty’s anymore.