The pub was packed. Standing room only. Yet we hardly took notice as the music was mesmerizing. The best trad (traditional) music I’ve heard here. Foolin In Doolin has been around for years but tonight Blackie (pictured here with his pipes) and Cyril were playing with a new fiddle player and it was pure magic.
We had arrived early enough to get a small table next to the band and right next to the shelf where bands display cds they have available for sale. Just a small shelf and a modest display. If you like the music you can purchase a cd between sets. No signs, no advertising, no big deal.
We shared our table with a young woman from California. A marketing executive who had just left her job and boyfriend and was traveling several weeks in Europe. This was her first time in Ireland. She was delightful and, I suppose, she just couldn’t help herself. It was after the first set that she created and stepped into the role of band manager. Her purpose: selling cds. At first the band played with her and her role a bit. They were gracious about her suggestions that they should get a website and at the very least an email list to promote their music. Her telling the band to mention the cds between sets was one thing, but when she started interrupting the sets and, with the emboldening influence of a few pints, telling them to mention the cds between songs that was quite another. It was then that Cyril leaned over and quietly told her that really isn’t how they do things in Ireland.
When we come to Ireland, or any place really, filled with our sense of self and culture we have no capacity to take in anything new. No capacity to receive the gifts of another place and culture. We are too full to be filled with a different beauty and magic. No foolin.
Judith – firstname.lastname@example.org