Music flows as thick as Irish humor in the Emerald Isle. At any place, at any time you can hear traditional Irish music pouring out of a bar or a group jamming on a street corner. You can sit in the lobby of a hostel and kick back while a foursome strums guitars, plays pipes and sings. These gatherings make up a craic — a good time, a lot of fun, a pint with friends, a night on the town. (Also known as limin’ in Grenada.)
Oddly, traditional Irish music is limited to only a couple of venues in Dublin. There’s the Cobblestone a few steps away from the Generator Hostel. It’s a pub run by a family of musicians where every night up to a dozen artists squeeze into a dusty corner to play fiddles, guitars, drums and pipes. Gogarty’s is another pub that features local talent. As people gather in a standing room only crowd, there’s no shortage of jokes made at the expense of the Swiss, the Croatians, the Americans or whoever populates the pub that night.
In Kilkenny, Lanigans Bar & Restaurant hosts musicians every night. On Sundays the balladeers called The Kilkennys take the stage. The foursome performs recent songs by U2 as well as traditional tunes. Tonight they sang “The Old Man” at the request of a tall, square-jawed, young fellow who had just laid his father to rest. As the song faded he pulled out a white handkerchief from his suit pocket and wiped away the tears rolling down his cheeks.
The Lezovi are circumnavigating Ireland, the ninth country in their tour of Europe.