Classifieds Advertise Archive Subscriptions Family Announcements Photos Digital Editions/Apps
Connect with us

Archive News

Trad and Americana at Monroe’s in Arts Fest lunchtime gig



Date Published: {J}

From Hughie O’Donoghue’s massive paintings to Cillian Murphy’s tour-de-force turn in Misterman, this year’s Galway Arts Festival offers an assault on the senses.

As well as the major events, there is also work that is moving in a quieter, yet equally affecting, way. An example of this will be the lunchtime session from singer Noriana Kennedy with guitarist and vocalist Gerry Paul in Monroe’s Live this Saturday, July 23.

Gerry Paul’s accent points to the southern hemisphere but he has ties, both familial and musical, to Ireland.

“I was born in Dublin, my parents moved over to New Zealand when I was about six,” he says. “Then we moved back in 1998, to go to secondary school. I’ve been pretty much playing music full-time since then.”

After returning to New Zealand for a year in 2000, Gerry Paul returned to Dublin to finish a civil engineering degree. But due to complications with fees, he was unable to complete the course and found himself instead in Ballyfermot, doing a traditional music course. There, he joined Gráda, the band he still plays with today. The group drew him to the West of Ireland (lead singer Nicola Joyce is from Headford) and six years ago Gerry moved to Galway.

“Dublin got a bit busy,” he says. “You’d be sitting on a bus for an hour just to get into town. Galway seemed like it had everything – a nice compact, little city with an artistic community. I’m living out in Salthill, there’s something magic about being next to the sea, with the creativity.”

Gráda regularly tour Europe, the US and Australia. Their last album, Natural Angle was recorded in Nashville with Americana legend Tim O’Brien, who worked on the Grammy-winning soundtrack to O Brother Where Art Thou. The band mixes Irish and American music, something Gerry continues to do with Noriana Kennedy.

“Earlier on – we’re going ten years with Gráda – it was very much a jazz influence,” he recalls. “Andy, the bass player, came from a jazz background; Alan’s got a real improv style. Over the last few years, because Nicola’s really into the Americana music and I am, it steered in that direction.”

The tight-knit nature of the Galway music scene means Gerry can call on a host of like-minded players.

“A lot of brilliant collaborations happen,” he explains. “You get to feeling like you know people and you can sit it and jam with anyone. Those Salthouse [Bar, Ravens’ Terrace] sessions we have on a Sunday afternoon – anyone could be there from Noriana, Kelvin Busher, Niall McTeague, Tom Portman, Mark Sullivan from the Lazy Blues Band, the guys from No Banjo.”

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Galway in Days Gone By

The way we were – Protecting archives of our past



A photo of Galway city centre from the county council's archives

People’s living conditions less than 100 years ago were frightening. We have come a long way. We talk about water charges today, but back then the local District Councils were erecting pumps for local communities and the lovely town of Mountbellew, according to Council minutes, had open sewers,” says Galway County Council archivist Patria McWalter.

Patria believes we “need to take pride in our history, and we should take the same pride in our historical records as we do in our built heritage”. When you see the wealth of material in her care, this belief makes sense.

She is in charge of caring for the rich collection of administrative records owned by Galway County Council and says “these records are as much part of our history as the Rock of Cashel is. They document our lives and our ancestors’ lives. And nobody can plan for the future unless you learn from the past, what worked and what didn’t”.

Archivists and librarians are often unfairly regarded as being dry, academic types, but that’s certainly not true of Patria. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she turns the pages of several minute books from Galway’s Rural District Councils, all of them at least 100 years old.

Part of her role involved cataloguing all the records of the Councils – Ballinasloe, Clifden, Galway, Gort, Loughrea, Mountbellew, Portumna and Tuam. These records mostly consisted of minutes of various meetings.

When she was cataloguing them she realised their worth to local historians and researchers, so she decided to compile a guide to their content. The result is For the Record: The Archives of Galway’s Rural District Councils, which will be a valuable asset to anybody with an interest in history.

Many representatives on these Councils were local personalities and several were arrested during the political upheaval of the era, she explains.

And, ushering in a new era in history, women were allowed to sit on these Rural District Councils – at the time they were not allowed to sit on County Councils.

All of this information is included in Patria’s introductory essay to the attractively produced A4 size guide, which gives a glimpse into how these Rural Councils operated and the way political thinking changed in Ireland during a short 26-year period. In the early 1900s, these Councils supported Home Rule, but by 1920, they were calling for full independence and refusing to recognise the British administration.

“I love the tone,” says Patria of the minutes from meetings. “The language was very emotive.”

That was certainly true of the Gort Rural District Council. At a meeting in 1907, following riots in Dublin at the premiere of JM Synge’s play, The Playboy of the Western World the councillors’ response was vehement. They recorded their decision to “protest most emphatically against the libellous comedy, The Playboy of the Western World, that was belched forth during the past week in the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, under the fostering care of Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats. We congratulate the good people of Dublin in howling down the gross buffoonery and immoral suggestions that are scattered throughout this scandalous performance.


For more from the archives see this week’s Tribunes here

Continue Reading

Archive News

Real Galway flavour to intermediate club hurling battle in Birr



Date Published: 23-Jan-2013


Continue Reading

Archive News

Athenry fail to take chances as they bow out of Junior Cup



Date Published: 29-Jan-2013

Athenry FC 1

Kilbarrack United 2

(After extra time)

For the second year in succession Athenry were done in extra time in the FAI Junior Cup as last season’s beaten finalist’s came from behind to snatch an excellent game in Moanbawn on Sunday afternoon.

On a heavy pitch that was only playable following extensive groundwork by club officials all morning, the home side were by far the better side in the opening half, but failed to take advantage of a number of opportunities that came their way.

An Alan O’Donovan penalty gave them a merited advantage just after the restart, but thereafter were on the back foot as Kilbarrack took over, but for all their pressing, the home rearguard were dealing comfortably with their forays.

However they were struck a body blow just six minutes from time, as big striker Keith Kirwan was left all alone at the far post to head the equaliser and from that point on the Dubliners were the better side.

They started off the extra time in the ascendancy and enjoying all the momentum before striking for a good winning goal on 104 minutes. A strong bench allowed them to make some necessary changes and it was not a facility that was available to Athenry manager Gabriel Glavin.

With Gary Forde and Gary Delaney out through suspension following their sending off against OLBC in the previous round, and Seamie Crowe injured, it left their bench rather threadbare with just a number of young squad players available.

Playing with the aid of the slight incline and any wind advantage going, the home side had a Connor Cannon effort on target in the opening minute, while John Meleady was just over with a flick at the other end.

Meleady then tested Andrew Walsh who saved comfortably, before the goalkeeper pulled off a brilliant double save on 14 minutes.

Firstly he went full length to push away a Meleady shot and was then back on his feet to parry David Jackson’s close-range rebound.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.

Continue Reading

Local Ads

Local Ads