The past few weeks I've been travelling from the nest gigging. The first of these musical excursions was to Allihies and the "Michael Dwyer Festival"-an annual Irish music gathering in memory of the late Michael Dwyer. The festival takes place in Michael's native Beara peninsula; Beara is situated in West Cork. Michael was a whistle player from Beara who spent many years in London. The history of the community in Allihies is long intertwined with copper mining. As the mines eventually gave up their store, much of the community upped and left for Butte, Montana, in the USA. Butte was, and still is to some extent, the most Irish city in the U.S. I remember drinking Black Butte Porter in a bar in Jacksonville, Oregon (coincidentally another old mining town). Being from the southwest of Ireland (and vaguely familiar with Butte Montana), I knew how to pronounce the beer's name-black beaut-like the Aussie expression-"you beaut." My American drinking companion (from the Georgia in the U.S.), on the other hand, pronounced the beer-black butt-much to my own amusement.
|Foley's Bar, Inch|