There was something of a festival atmosphere in the Highway Inn this evening as the GAA Crusheen Junior A team had won a match adding to the success of Crusheen GAA in recent weeks and the team were in to accept plaudits all adding to the general hurly burly of Saturday night. It was a shame that the venue was not packed to capacity as this show deserved to draw a larger audience.
Another one man outfit who drew a loyal following to Sean Malone's Folk Club at the Market Tavern in Miltown Malbay on a midweek night was former Bothy Band fiddler Kevin Burke on a rare vist to Clare. I have a vivid memory of seeing the Bothy Band back in the late seventies in Waterford and he cut a very genial relaxed figure on the small stage clearly very comfortable in the intimate setting. At the interval the afficionados swapped notes on the finer points of his style revelling in the cuts and rolls . One young man who was serving at the bar spoke of his journey from the McPeake school of music in Belfast to Clare and had just taken up the fiddle. Burke's very fine style seemed to draw the sound seductively out of his instrument and he mixed his tempos offering selections in all the dance forms although eschewing the slow air format . Even he could not win me over to the appeal of Breton music. I look forward to hearing his recent collaboaration with members of the Portland Symphony Orchestra and Cal Scott.
I like both these venues and along with the Sixmilebridge Folk Club under stewardship of Brendan Walsh have enjoyed memorble nights of fine music making under their aegis.