Celtic Corner
By Decimus Rock

Turning England On Its Ear

Paul Saunders' "The Dervish Experience" in the JulyIrish Music magazine recounts a recent Dervish concert in Shrewsbury Buttermarket as a Hans Christian Andersen "red shoes" phenomenon that brought spasms of uncontrolled happy feet to a widely disparate audience. Dearly beloved, this bodes well for the citizens of Louisville who make their way to the Irish Family Fest on the third weekend of September (19-21).

Actually, Dervish's favorite gig is on the island of Majorca (west of Spain in the Mediterranean Sea for you Ameri-centric Consumer Blobs) where they most relish their live performances. Having evolved from pub session habitués, they claim to do their best work without the headphones and egg carton walls. They will likely have their live CD available for our Louisville listeners. Rock's recurring dream is for them to retire to a local venue for a session after blowing away every innocent soul at Bellarmine on Saturday, 9/20.


Next month you will learn how the local and regional bands, including the Louisville Pipe Band will provide further incentives to be present and aurally active on that day in our highland glens of Louisville. The evening ceili in Bellarmine's Frazier Hall will finish Saturday with Louisville's own Ten Penny Bit, Irish ceili dancing, as well as step dancing by the heralded Richens Academy of Irish Dance, which brings the remarkable All-Ireland champion John Timm. Sooo, "PREPARE TO BE DAZZLED."

Sunday will follow with the legendary Stockton's Wing, whose old bones can still rattle very well indeed, thank you very much already. New vendors, an enhanced medieval presence, a larger pub tent all await you. Rock defies you to find in this town a better music festival experience for the $5.00 admission charge.

Pat Kirtley at Twice Told Coffeehouse

While he certainly will not confine his repertoire to the music of the Gael, Pat will beyond peradventure (don't you just love that word - I should wear a wool wig!) to perform a few of his tracks from his recently releasedIrish Guitar. Unless your ears are nailed to a Celtic cross (like Rock's), you will surely delight in Captain Kirtley's deft hand withall the styles he undertakes. You don't get to be the US National Fingerstyle Guitar Champion by thrashing around. Go there on August 2.

Peter's Pipes Personally Prepared for Puny Payment

Bagpipes made in Louisville? It couldn't happen here!! But yes. Pete Crisler of Middletown is not only an up-and-coming piper in the Louisville Pipe Band, he makes the pipes with skill and precision in his shop, which is crammed with lathes and milling machines. He is getting high marks from the world community of pipers as well.

A set of Great Highland Bagpipes (GHB) cost approximately $1200. Pete would give them away but wife Wilma won't let him, so his price is $875. Never mind you also save on delivery and have the maker easily at hand for service. A properly maintained set of GHBs will not lose their value, but more likely gain value over time. A set of cheap Pakistani pipes ($300-$500) will a.) suck soundwise, b.) not be playable with any other legitimate pipers, and c.) decline in value.

Peter's exclusive local dealer is the Celtic Centre, on Chenoweth Lane in St. Matthews, phone 897-9050, where you can also pick up a kilt and all the various Celtic accouterments. In case you might also want to learn to play the GHB, you can learnFREE from the Louisville Pipe Band. Beginner classes start in August at the regular rehearsal site of the band, to wit, St. Andrews Church on Woodbourne Avenue in (you guessed it) the Highlands. For more information about piping lessons, call 254-3963. If you want to be a pipe band drummer, call 634-5950. All ages, genders, etc., are welcome.

Rock's Recommended Buy

If you are into songwriters, Tanya Savory is must see/listen. If you love Christy Moore, you will want to pick up a copy of Jimmy MacCarthy's "The Song of the Singing Horseman" to hear how the tunes made famous by CM are sung by the composer (Mulligan Records Catalogue No. LUNCDO53).