A lighter footstep

Posted on: 4th April, 2016

Category: Music

Contributor: Mark Holland

Hunky Dory in Clonakilty stocks a huge range of instruments, accessories, CDs and vinyl. Contact Mark on 023 8834982 or pop in to have a listen.

I ran in to Luka Bloom a little while back; he was in the shop looking for something by Melody Gardot on vinyl — highly recommended by the way, especially for those intimate moments after the sun has gone down. He was around town for a while and seemed to be enjoying the experience, catching up with friends and family. He was putting the finishing touches on his (very) soon-to-be released album ‘Frugalisto’; the title referring to his appreciation of some of the influences he has enjoyed in his current home, north county Clare: Young people finding ways to incorporate how we live today, without impacting negatively on the planet we are borrowing from future generations — a planet that we are meant to be caretaking, as in pass it on in better shape than we got it. That does demand us being frugal with finite resources, which we seem to have forgotten is actually rewarding for it’s own sake, in a deep and perpetuating way. Instead we are passive in our support of an ever-increasing demand for low quality goods of a disposable nature that are racing to the scrap heap so that we can replace them as quickly as possible. We are almost past the point where we have the knowhow to extend the useful life of materials — how to be frugal, earn, so that we feel good about what we’ve got.

West Cork is massive, and I mean that in a few different definitions of the word, but two things that I think are important living here are an outsider’s perspective on the place and the necessity of getting away from here every now and again so that we can look at it again with fresh eyes.

Luka enjoyed the privilege of recording his album in the intimate state-of-the-art facilities at the Lettercollum House recording studio, which comes through in the songs themselves, and the privilege of working with world-renowned resident sound engineer John Fitzgerald, “the best recording experience of my life”. Amongst other musical friends, his nephew, the immense Gavin Moore of Monk’s Lane — well-known for his Wednesday night sitting room sessions — plays with him on the album.

Luka will be showcasing the album in De Barra’s on April 21.

Elsewhere, the ever-creative duo of Sean and Chris, aka Ambiguousfiddle are presenting a (Cuinas) night in Connolly’s in Leap on April 29.  Always looking for new ways to go to, where no woman, or man, has gone before, they bring a global mixed media approach to artists who are firmly immersed in the art, personal and accessible.

Keep an eye out for 19-year-old Fintan McKahey, who will be releasing and promoting his EP later this month. I probably shouldn’t make comparisons, but with shades of Ry Cooder and Mark Knopfler at their best; I mention his age because the depth of the songs belies it.

The third Saturday of April is permanently earmarked as World Record Store day and with a bit of luck Fintan will turn up to do a set in the shop to mark it.

It’s beginning to feel like the enduring malaise that has beset us all through this difficult winter is lifting, and in the words of Luka Bloom on completing his album, he…“just knew everything was fine in this world”.

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