Martin Hayes and Dennis Cahill

A huge empty stage with only two chairs and a couple of microphones was all Martin Hayes and Dennis Cahill needed in order to keep the audience under their spell during the whole set. Martin proved to be a fiddle virtuoso, and it was quite impressive to see how Dennis supported him on his acoustic guitar. When Martin started playing his fiddle, he played it for a quarter of an hour on end, moving on from one tune to another. The fieriness with which he tapped the rhythm with his foot was touching and funny at the same time. I couldn’t help wondering how long he would be able to keep that up before having a cramp, but he didn’t seem to have any trouble with it.

I really don’t understand why people often have a low opinion of folk music. People listening to jazz or to classical music, are either regarded as intellectuals or very trendy people. People listening to folk music, however, are most often regarded as unfashionable vegetarians wearing goat’s wool socks. Now, when I hear a musician playing a classical violin, I can be very impressed, but when I hear someone playing jigs and reels on a fiddle, I find that even more impressive, if only because of the punishing pace of this kind of music!

Only a few times did Martin stop playing in order to have a nice little chat with the audience, which was visibly amazed and enchanted by the duo’s compelling performance. During one of these conversations he taught us something: the Irish live in a state of eternal melancholy alternated with short periods of joy. Luckily for us, their set was not really a reflection of this universal truth, for they mainly played joyful tunes, from time to time alternated by a sad one.

What struck me most during this concert was the way in which Martin and Dennis are geared to one another. Dennis watched his companion closely in order to be fully able to support him, which gave the concert a very intimate touch. So it was no surprise that, in the end, the audience once again treated the musicians to a very enthusiastic round of applause and asked them back on stage for a couple of encores. Before that, Dennis had already treated the audience to a "Mercy bowcou". You're very welcome Dennis, "Mercy bowcou" to you too!

More info: http://www.martinhayes.com

10:49 Gepost door Aisling | Permalink | Commentaren (0) |  Facebook |

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