Celtic Corner
By Decimus Rock

Transcending Celtic Chic.

That's how The Oregonian newspaper music critic describes Jez Lowe's album, The Parish Notices. The description is apt. Born of an Irish mother and an English father, Jez Lowe is a product - and now the cultural icon - of his native Northeastern England homeland. As a singer/songwriter, Jez Lowe has toured regularly in North America, Australia, New Zealand and Europe, singing musical depictions of characters of his beloved County Durham and a society and way of life in Northumbria which is quickly disappearing. If you have seen the film "Billy Elliott" you will know a little about the community that is the genesis of Jez's music. It was filmed virtually in Jez's "backyard".

So what, you say? Jez Lowe will be making his solo debut (he brought his band, The Bad Pennies, to a packed house at the Rudyard in January) in the Bluegrass State at the newly renovated Kentucky Theater on Theatre Square (4th & Broadway) on Wednesday, October 3 at 8 p.m. All tickets are $10 at the door. John Gage, River City's own bard, will be opening the show. There is no excuse for missing this one. This is the perfect venue for a performance of the likes of Jez Lowe. "Up close and personal," as they say.

Rock had the good fortune last summer of being in England when Jez did a solo gig at a folk club in the quaint village of Hitichin north of London. The charisma and musical quality were all that had been promised by the recordings. Richard Thompson describes Jez as the best songwriter to come out of England since ... Richard Thompson - high praise indeed.

Kitty O'Kirwans Pub

If you have not been there yet, get on your mule and go! You can almost imagine peat smoke in the air in the snug atmosphere there at 102 Bauer Avenue in St. Matthews. Aside from the wonderful food and drink, music will be a regular feature. Jam sessions are slated for Thursday nights. All players are welcome. Every Saturday night will offer Louisville's original Irish band, Drowsy Maggie, along with various comrades sitting in. Friday nights will be the showcase for other bands and musicians in town and the region.

Call for details 897-9050.

Adult Irish Dancing Classes

All interested persons ages 18 and up are invited to learn the basic steps and ceili dances taught by Heather McClanahan, certified Irish dance instructor. Classes will be held on Wednesday evenings (7 to 8 p.m.) at 201 Breckenridge Lane, Suite 200. The cost is $80 per person and $150 per couple. What is the cost of joy? This is a great opportunity to participate in the merriment of your ancestors. Call (502) 897-1400 as soon as possible for more information.

Locust Grove Fall Festival

This historic property on Blankenbaker Lane will be host to a nice Fall festival, with music very much a part of the event. Celtic rockers Seven Nations will perform on Saturday, October 13 in the late afternoon and will have a show later that evening. This band has taken the Highland Games circuit by storm. You cannot attend one of these events across the country without their thundering presence. Check it out. Galloglas will be performing at the festival on Sunday, October 14 at 5 p.m. There are a number of other very good (but not Celtic) musical acts. The Irish Rover is one of the proud sponsors, so Rock presumes you may also be able to have some of their delicious potato leek soup while you listen.

Happy Birthday Irish Rover

Louisville's original authentic Irish pub celebrates another birthday - the 5th or 6th (time flies when you are having fun, eh?). Come by on Thursday, November 1 and celebrate the Celtic New Year with live Irish music from 8 p.m. till 11. Congratulations to Siobhan and Michael for having made the Irish in Louisville proud!

The Crossing

This is another Chicago area Christian Celtic band which comes highly recommended. They will be in concert at The Rudyard Kipling on Thursday, November 1, starting at 7:30. They have a couple of CDs and have played festivals throughout the USA, so you can look forward to a very inspirational evening.

Halloween at Molly Malone's

Halloween is really the Celtic New Year. Come celebrate with your costume at Molly Malone's on Saturday, October 27. Galloglas will be performing for the assembled monsters.

Drummers Wanted

Did you play in your high school/college marching band? Need an outlet? Louisville Pipe Band is the answer. Learn (free of charge) pipe band drumming technique - very hot.

Call (502)894-8856 to learn more.

The only Galloglas show is 10/27 for Halloween party at Molly Malone's.