Píobaire, An, Volume 1, Issue 10, Page 12

Píobaire, An, Volume 1, Issue 10, Page 12
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periodical Publisher
Na Píobairí Uilleann
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Chairman, NPU
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Píobaire, An
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(86)6After him, a short song learnt from Tibetans, and then an immigrant Sherpa woman (andFriend) singing (also with long pauses while the household went about its business) a lovesong in Nepali.I could only get a selection of the Nepali music, and then I am not able (lacking time andlanguage) to do more with it than present it to Irish pipers and others as a sign that all isnot yet lost, but it is being lost. Bartok said It doesn 1 t help to know how quickly every-thing rushes towards its own destruction. We have to be reminded by many heavy blows,over and over again. It doesnt much help either, to know that the ethnomusicologistwith his taperecorder and computer is part of this destruction.Ronnie Wathen, Reykjavik, Jan.73.lIIIMICHAEL JOSEPH CARNEYPppppppppppppppqqqqqqqqqqqq.Mike Carney was born in Dunmacreena, lrishtown, Co. Mayo around 1861. He emigratedto America in the early 1880 and died in Brooklyn in May 1938. He became paralyzedfrom the hips down in 1905 and was confined thereafter to a wheel chair, from where hedid all his pipe and reedmaking and playing. He did not take up the pipes until after hebecame crippled but he was already a beautiful flute player. As a man once said,would stand knee deep in snow to hear him play.Mike was a great piper, a good pipemaker and reed-maker. He came from a line ofpipers. His father had played for Michael Davitt at the first Land League meeting whichwas held in Irishtown, Co. Mayo (1879) . His uncle James was a good piper; he, too,lived in Brooklyn as did his brother Jim, who played the accordian and was full of music.Mike was a good Irishman and was held in high esteem by all Irish musicians in the country.All the flute players and fiddlers in New York and from all over the country came to hearhim. Many a time there would be as many as ten of them in the kitchen, playing theirhearts out. That was when you would hear the real music of the soil, an entirely differentstyle from that you hear today. May the eternal light of Heaven shine upon their souls.As one old timer said to me, That breed has gone and they took it to the grave with them.Mike was a much better player than the two records he made would suggest. When, in thesemidarkness of a summer night you walked into the house, you would find him in thekitchen leaning back in the old wheel chair, puffing on a cigar and belting away on thepipes. It was then you heard the back stitching and the cranning and the corauhiblesbeing put in. He could play for hours and never repeat a tune. A lot of his music wentto the grave with him. What a treasure we should have if tape recorders had been aroundat that time.Mike and Patsy Tuohey were close friends. Mike told me rust to hear Patsy tune up thepipes was enough to make you quit playing. I am sure he was being modest for as far as Icould see there was not much between them, only their slyle. Mike played a strong reedas you can tell From his records and Patsy played a weak reed which allowed him to dothat intricate fingering without any hindrance. Many of the New York musicians got alot of their tunes from Mike. Mrs. Carney told me Jim Morrison boarded with them whenhe was a green horn and when shaving in the kitchen sink if Mike played a tune he hadnever heard before, he would drop the brush or the razor, grab the fiddle and keep himplaying it till he got it. Mike was the last of a piping strain. The old house is gone andnone of the family left. He had no children, only a niece, now my wife, whom heraised and I only wish I had her gift of picking up tunes: I would be a happy man.The last tune Mike played was The Morning Star reel and how well I remember it. Hewas sick but had gotten up. Bob Hartnett came in. I was sitting alongside Mike practising on the bag and chanter. Bob asked him to show him a turn in it. He leaned over andasked me to turn the chanter around. He played and I did the blowing.con td
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Píobaire, An, Volume 1, Issue 10

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