Michael O’Suilleabhain – Plunkett

Various Artists – Lament

Various Artists – Lament

Last week I was busy and for some reason could not find a track to post – even without much in the way of commentary. This week is different. For the next few weeks I am going to post tracks of Irish music. What has motivated me has been the number of articles I have read / radio programmes I have heard describing the consequences of the meltdown of the Irish economy. These commentaries have been coming thicker and faster in light of the imminent IMF / European Central Bank bailout.

There is of course much debate about who should shoulder the blame for the problem – and rightly so. But the human stories, the effects of the crash on people’s lives today and will for decades to come, are just as important.

On Thursday Joseph O’Connor wrote a perceptive piece in the Guardian describing the fear and uncertainty felt in Irish society.

“Far from the gloomy headlines and crushing statistics lies the full truth of what we face now. We tuck our children into bed not knowing if they have a future in our country. In every home in the land, there has been private anxiety and panic. Our government has no moral authority to remain in power. People feel frightened, alone and unled.”

And he concluded with some cold comfort.

“It isn’t rhetoric to say that this can still be a wonderful and special country, a republic as unique for its successes as for its shames and ducked responsibilities – but this has been a dreadful and agonised awakening, and we have a thousand miles of hard road before us.”

The Irish are famously melancholic, often with just cause. So I’ll begin this series of Irish tracks with a tune from the 1992 album Lament from RealWorld Records. For this album, various artists were “asked to record their saddest air as a memory for the loss of innocent life in the Troubles.” They somehow seem appropriate as a lament for the consequences of financial innocence.

Michael O’Suilleabhain – Plunkett

One thought on “Michael O’Suilleabhain – Plunkett

  1. dill

    Hi Andy – what a lovely track. It reminded me of one I think was called ‘Mrs Jamieson’s Favourite’, on an album (quaint old usage, there) I once had by a Scottish Islands band called Mac-talla. I bought it in Portree in the mid-90s (I think), without knowing what I was buying, and it’s a little cracker. Actually, I’ve still got it somewhere – in an ancient format known as cassette you’ve probably long forgotten.

    I read that Guardian article, too. Things have moved on, though – having decided that austerity doesn’t work when the Irish do it to themselves, they’re introducing the imaginative new policy of…austerity inflicted by the IMF. Or will be on Tuesday, if that same old Graun is right. Should work, what?

Comments are closed.