Heeding warnings

Since the winter of 2015/2016, Met Eireann and The UK equivalent – The Met Office – have named storms. They release the names in advance – they go in alphabetical order and alternate between a male and a female name. The list skips the letters Q, U, X, Y and Z, so each year the weather forecasters are ready with 21 names in case we have 21 storms. Last night we had Storm Hannah, and the next storm, whenever it hits will be called Storm Idris. But if your name begins with a letter later in the alphabet, like Saoirse or Tristan this year, it will take a particularly violent winter of storms to bring a storm named after you. The objective of this initiative is to raise awareness of impending severe weather. And it has worked. But it has also brought complaints of false warnings – that weather warnings have been issued when no severe weather has actually arrived.

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Showing respect

In a pub music culture, musicians realise that when patrons talk during their performance, it’s not necessarily disrespectful, in the same way as it would be in a theatre perhaps. People come to a pub for all sorts of reasons, and if the publican decides to put on some music it’s usually with the aim of adding to the quality of the night out for his customers, not of it being their sole focus. But it’s sometimes a tricky situation for them, and indeed for any patrons who want to listen intently to the music. A loud conversation close by can be distracting, and while it’s not intended to disrespect the musicians or the listening punter, it’s certainly not ideal for either party. However when a group of people come in to a pub and sit down right in front of the musicians, with the clear intention of not only listening to every note but also of getting  involved in

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New band, new blog…

Hi again everyone – It feels good to be writing here again. While I figure out the exact details of when and how this blog will return, I just wanted to let you know about a new band of which I am part. It’s called The Gateway City Project, and features my long-time musical partner Seamie O’Dowd (guitar/vocals), as well as good friends John Joe Kelly (bodhrán) and Cathal Roche (saxophones, clarinet). 3 (all bar Cathal) of us are playing in The Coleman Centre in Gurteen this coming Saturday night (see here for more details). And then the debut of the 4-piece will be in the Hawk’s Well Theatre on Wed May 29. Tickets go on sale tomorrow morning (Thursday) from http://www.hawkswell.com