Link to Living Tradition Homepage





JOE LACKY GALLAGHER - The Leitrim Cake: Music Bright And Undiminished

JOE LACKY GALLAGHER - The Leitrim Cake: Music Bright And Undiminished
The John McKenna Society MCKENNACD001

The first impression here is of a superbly presented and packaged piece of work. The enclosed booklet gives a lot of information about the man, his music, the area he lived in, his friends, influences and the importance of music in his life and the life of the community. There are some excellent photos too.

Joe ‘Lacky’ Gallagher was born in 1918 in the townland of Cloonamurgal near Drumkeeran, Co. Leitrim. Lacky comes from the shortened form of his father’s name, Malachy. This was a way of distinguishing him from other Gallaghers who may also have been called Joe. As well as being a master fiddler, Joe worked hard and had various jobs. He was a farmer, a carpenter, learned some blacksmithing, had a quarry business, delivered coal around the area and reconstructed the old family house, in the kitchen of which there was as likely to be a lorry engine being repaired or a session in full swing on a cold winter’s night. Joe died aged 60, way too young, but left a great legacy of music and a life well lived.

The recordings featured on this CD were made by Radio Eireann in February and March of 1948. This was made possible by an innovation known as the Radio Eireann Mobile Recording Unit which appeared in 1947. As well as Radio Eireann material, the CD also includes material from the National Folklore Commission.

The tunes played here will be familiar to most who are interested in Irish music. There are 19 tracks; reels, jigs and hornpipes, all played in the north Connaught style. Track 7, a set of reels, The College Grove / Dr. Gilbert / The Queen Of May, is typical of what’s on offer. Superbly played, musical, a lovely tone and great bowing.

Anyone who buys this CD will not be disappointed either by the music or the presentation. The recordings were digitally restored by Harry Bradshaw, and produced by The John McKenna Society.

Dermot Kearney

Secure On-line mailorder service
Buy this CD online from The Listening Post
The Listening Post is the CD mailorder service of The Living Tradition magazine.
This album was reviewed in Issue 96 of The Living Tradition magazine.