17 March 2021

St Patrick's day: 1

To mark St Patrick's day this year, the BIB recommends 'Cremonea', a composition by Turlough O'Carolan, which can be heard here, played on clawhammer banjo by Janet Burton, who put it on YouTube two weeks ago (4 Mar. 2021). At the time of writing it is the latest video on her YouTube channel.

Several other O'Carolan tunes are on the channel, which is predominantly a treasury of old-time American fiddle and banjo tunes. One deceptively simple example is 'Spring Creek gal', recorded four years ago (1 Mar. 2017), when Janet Burton wrote:

I'm taking Dwight Diller's advice this year and choosing my favorite 25-30 tunes to play again and again. He wisely asks why learn hundreds of tunes, just to forget how to play them or how they go.

Sound advice - nonetheless, since then Janet has recorded dozens if not hundreds of other tunes, all well worth hearing. Three weeks ago she recorded 'Three tunes inspired by Lee Sexton', in honour of the Kentucky musician who died on 11 Feb.

© Richard Hawkins


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