When you think of Ireland you think of music, and there’s a good reason for that. It’s our gathering, a place we feel as one people at pubs, parties, on a street bench or in a park. The instrument maker and his creation, the beat and the rhythm, and the human voice lifted high have raised our spirits during hard times, and have been the background of our joy during good times.
Ireland is the only country in the world that has a musical instrument—the harp—as its national emblem. There is a way in which music captures the soul of who we, as Irish, are, and it’s a way that seems to touch almost everyone.
Whether you’re in Dublin or a remote town, there’s a good chance that music will be happening in a pub on any given night. (And the pubs are now smoke-free.) Some sessions are planned. Others are spontaneous and all are welcome to join in with their instruments, voices, hands, spoons, and foot-tapping.
If the session is planned and you like the group, pick up one of their CDs. You won’t find them in stores, and you’ll be glad to have the memory of that time to take home and stick into your CD player while driving down the road or puttering around the house. We love our traditional music, but all forms of music flourish in Ireland.
Is there any way to separate dance from music? When you hear Irish music, your body wants to move. It’s not surprising that traditional Irish dance has not only made a huge comeback in our own country, it’s finding its way around the globe!
And so we suggest: Ring in the New Year with Irish Music!