East of East Galway (Paddy Fahey’s)

This piece is my tribute to Paddy Fahey – the much loved traditional fiddler from East Galway who passed away in 2019.
The main theme – a jig of his – is one of the many tunes he composed already firmly embedded in the Irish traditional repertoire.

“Draíocht”, the magical quality often spoken of with regard to Paddy Fahey’s music, is full of wistfulness very much resonating with my musical soul deeply immersed in the Slavic/Balkan/Middle-Eastern realms. Feeling that eastern flutes are naturally befitting the mood here I eventually dared to give it a try.

The low flute playing here is a Turkish Kaval (a rim-blown flute) played using the Shoor technique (hailing from Tuva – the Republic in southern Siberia renowned for its throat singers) to imitate the sound of a Persian Ney (an extraordinary instrument invoked by the poet Rumi as a metaphor of human condition). In the arrangement I strived to introduce a concept borrowed from Kan ha diskan, the traditional Breton singing technique based on a dialogue between the leading singers – flutes in this case.

The tin whistle playing here is my favourite Eb made by the brilliant Goldfinch Whistles crew from Poland (www.goldfinch.eu)
Soundscapes in the background captured by the tireless sonic hunter Marcel Gnauk from Free2Use Sounds (www.freetousesounds.com) feature sounds from Indonesia, Thailand, Portugal, Germany, and Iceland (one exception, actually north of East Galway).