Just a few feet from where the sea strokes the sand, the fire's crackling and the tunes are fabulous. What could make this better? No egos. You heard me right. It is indeed possible in America to have eight Irish musicians, most of whom do it for a living, in a single room, in front of an audience, and still not have a pesky ego in sight to cause problems. We experienced it last night and I tell you, this could be downright addictive.
I apologize to those who idealize Irish sessions in America as rare occurrences of communal music making, where each part is revered not for its own voice, but rather for its contribution to the whole. It's not. Well, not always.
Why? Because human beings play Irish music. And human beings, at least in America, have a mild-to-acute tendency to equate what we do outside with who we are inside. In a session, this can play out at showboating... something we Americans are wont to do most egregiously. Last night, no showboaters. Respect for each other, with everyone listening to what's being played, sung, recited. It was awfully nice.
That's the unattainable perfection that we continually reach for. It's never perfect, but we are thankful to leave with hands full, even if a few grains did slip through our fingers.
It's awfully nice, friends. Thanks for coming, K and D.