Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Swell

I love all things Irish. I love to walk thru the villages, talk with the people, visit the pubs, feel the salty breeze in my face and listen to the music. The earthiness and realness of the Irish people are like no other I have ever met. I have many favorite Irish movies, but one of the best is Once.
Last night, Rick and I and our friends Kaye and Jamie heard The Swell. Lead singer, writer, guitar player, piano player, Glen Hansand is Irish, tall and thin, with red curly hair and a voice that booms and then climbs to a soft beautiful tenor. He did the songs, and played the lead in Once, a movie about a struggling Irish singer/songwriter. I have seen so many great music shows, but The Swell took their performance to a level last night that many of the greats aspire to and never reach. The songs are simple, haunting poems with melodies that at times seem unworldly. It was honest music that played with your emotions, lifting, soaring and then crashing you to earth in an instant. All I could think of as I sat and heard those songs, was how much I wanted to go back to Ireland. As I listened to Glen and Marketa Irglove, their voices entwining like the sweetest of roses with the thickest of thorns, I was sadden by the fact that so many have not had the pleasure of hearing them. Everyone in the band was outstanding, it was one of those concerts that you never wanted to end. I kept thinking about our Irish friends, Tony and Dominic, their voices and songs, and how much fun we had playing together. Not much sleep last night, no energy tonight, but those songs have never left my head today, and I am reminded of the sacred trust of songwriting. You write from the heart, you sing and you play from the heart
and somewhere down the road, someone will remember of your songs.

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