Music Musings

Upcoming Shows 

I have a very busy summer coming up! Highlights include Northern Lights Festival Boréal on July 6 and 7, Killarney Mountain Lodge every Saturday, Sunday, and Monday from July to September, and The Elemental Festival in Kagawong on September 28. Hope to see you at one of these!








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Upcoming Shows 

Upcoming Shows

This is an exciting time. Not only will I be very busy this month because of St. Patrick's Day, but I will literally be busy for the next year. I have seldom if ever been able to say that before.


Five Shows in Three Days

Between March 15 and March 17 I will be playing two solo shows, two shows with Fagroongala, and one show with Billy John and the Irish Wake. The full details are below.


Regular Live Music Spot in Killarney for the Summer

Between June 30 and September 30 I will be…

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Upcoming Shows 

Upcoming Shows

Thanks to everyone who came to our recent shows, and welcome to the new people who have joined our mailing list. Our St. Patrick's Day concert at The Sudbury Theatre Centre was a sold-out show with standing ovations! Many people inquired when we are going to be performing next, so here is an update. As always, you can find the exact details at

Lunches with Lakes

Please note that there was an error in my previous notice about upcoming shows. The correct date of the…Read more

Choosing the right tin whistle 

Unfortunately, choosing the right tin whistle can be a confusing matter for several reasons: 

1. Any single piece of music can be played in twelve different keys. A song in a major key can be transposed to eleven other major scales, and a song in a minor key can be transposed to eleven other minor scales. This means that even when you know what songs are going to be played, and even if you can find them in a book or online, you don’t necessarily know any of the keys that they will be played in. Very often…

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Goodness and Diversity 

I am very interested in profound explorations. What does “good” mean? What is quality? Is it all subjective? If it is, then there is no reason for agreement other than social pressures and conformity; if what is right is just a matter of opinion, then those who enforce their opinions will always prevail. But that seems very dystopian to me.

I am aware of the Humean is-ought problem: that no articulation of what is right follows logically from facts alone, but rather from pre-assumed values. But I think it…

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Recording a challenging arrangement 

I have been recording, finally. Broomfield Hill is really hard. I think, more than anything else, it is this song that has been holding up the album, just as the album has been holding up my other releases and my self-promotion. I suppose it is one of the classic traps that creative people fall into to let everything hinge upon something that is almost impossible. I will refrain from analyzing the  psychology of this at the moment.

In my previous attempts at recording The Broomfield Hill – over many years…

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Priming an audience for traditional songs  

The gig went well last night. Lots of people showed up, including a lot of repeat listeners, and they were enthusiastic and appreciative. But we didn't play that well. The room was noisier this time, so it was harder to hear ourselves and each other. It was also harder to feel a connection with the audience. They seemed to be with us, but they talked through most of the night, including the slower quieter numbers.


I have a new idea about events like this. Perhaps for any highly sensitive person like me… Read more

Art isn't complete or even fully real until it is witnessed 

Today I have a gig with Fagroongala. I am looking forward to it. I really hope that there will be lots of people to hear our new arrangements, and I hope that the new songs will go over really well.   This is, after all, the last essential step in creation: the art isn't complete or even fully real, I feel, until it is witnessed and shared. As I have written before, all communication is a matter of taking an idea — an intangible invisible thought with no mass or dimension — placing it in a box, and… Read more

On hearing my arrangements played live for the first time 

I had a little trouble getting to sleep last night. I think it was because I was excited. I still am. I had a rehearsal with Fagroongala and it went really well.

We worked on three new songs: Quand j'étais jeune, À la claire fontaine, and The Broomfield Hill. I find it absolutely thrilling to hear live the arrangements that I've wanted to play for so many years! In addition, À la claire fontaine, Which I only arranged this month, but is a song that I've wanted to do for most of my life, now sounds exactly as…Read more