Back in the 90s and early 00s, when the Irish economy was developing some very strong high-tech aspects, there was some reflection on how a technology-driven economy would mesh with that country’s famously rich cultural heritage.

I suppose they had a point.  With so much of Celtic music steeped in mythic tales of ghosts, fairies, and other assorted what-nots, it must be very difficult for performers of the genre to make it relevant to the modern world.  After all, when someone in the 18th century heard a tale, for example, of someone walking down a distant road at night in the middle of nowhere and having a close encounter of the spooky kind, he had the added thrill of thinking that it might one day happen to him–or at least he might find himself in the sort of situation where it could happen.  In these prosaic (and well-lit) days, the chances seem more remote:  any ghost that wants to accost a traveler on a deserted roadway had better be able to move upwards of 60mph.

Or take that other staple of Celtic fare:  the “my true love sailed off to make his fortune; will he come back for me?” storyline.  Thanks to e-mail (not to mention Facebook)–as well as cultural shifts in the rules governing such matters–you just don’t get a lot of this “seven years since I did him see/And seven more I’ll wait upon him” business anymore.  Or if you do, the time frame is more likely to be in the range of minutes rather than years.

So the songs in this “album” are sort of an attempt to strike some sort of compromise between the past and present…or, since some of these parodies date back more than ten years, the past and the recent past….

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