Scartaglin On Tour of the World on Fiddle Day – In Spite of Everything

No masking the music: In spite of the worldwide restrictions on movement, Sliabh Luachra fiddle music will find its way around the globe on Saturday evening from 7:30pm as part of the planned World Fiddle Day Scartaglin celebrations. Founder member, PJ Teahan (left) and presenter and musician Con Moynihan pictured on the plinth of the Patrick O’Keeffe monument in Scartaglin on Sunday morning in preparation for the historic broadcast.   Photograph: John Reidy

Scartaglin will become the proverbial Global Village this weekend when the music of the area will be beamed to and from around the world with the Sliabh Luachra stronghold as its epicentre.

“If the visitors cannot come to Scartaglin to hear the sound of Sliabh Luachra this year because of Covid-19 then we will bring the music to them,” said a defiant World Fiddle Day founder member, PJ Teahan as he washed down the Patrick O’Keeffe monument in Scartaglin on Sunday morning.

Special Live Broadcast

“We’ll do an online, special live broadcast featuring fiddle players from around the world,” said PJ.

“There was a demand from our supporters to do something to mark the occasion and it took off from there.

“The amount of goodwill towards the event has been amazing as invitations to play have been sent out to fiddlers in the UK, USA, Holland and France as well as to several counties in Ireland to participate and there has been a huge response.”

Fiddlers of All Ages

With the technical help of website designer, Richard Nolan, PJ is putting the finishing touches to the 2020 World Fiddle Day Scartaglin Celebrations Concert and this will be broadcast live on Saturday evening, May 16th from 7:30pm.

“Our youngest fiddle player is nine and a half and we have a few that would easily remember the swinging sixties.

Inviting the Fiddlers of the World

“We’re inviting the world to join us and hear the sound of solo fiddles and tunes associated with the Sliabh Luachra area.

“To view the evening’s programme there are three options available and all the starting time of 7:30pm..” said PJ.

You can visit the Facebook Group Page World Fiddle Day Scartaglin or the video section of the website: or the YouTube Channel: Handed Down Scartaglin Sliabh Luachra Archive.

Still True to Original Purpose

The original purpose of World Fiddle Day was to celebrate the instrument’s place in the traditional music of the area. It still is.

The area being that surrounding Scartaglin, Ballydesmond, Cordal, and Castleisland. But the event also tips the peak of its cap to those who kept the tradition alive, safe and well and in tune with those who visited, collected and preserved what they found and liked here.

Other Instruments ? – By Invitation Only

Minimalism itself in terms of committee size only, the event is a collaboration between PJ Teahan, Mick Culloty and Tomás Mac Uilleagóid since it was founded in 2013 with its run-in, monthly series, Handed Down.

“It’s a fiddle festival and any other instruments, where featured over the weekend, are by invitation only,” said PJ Teahan.

Third Saturday in May

While the Saturday nearest to May 18th or the third Saturday in May has always been its anchor and its main day, there has been a beautiful overflowing of musical talent and tradition on both sides.

More recently the Fridays and Sundays have stepped up to help cope with the demand for more space and more time ….and much more music.

If you’d like to see and hear a couple of tunes from a lovely session at Sheila Prendiville’s Bar and Grocery from the first World Fiddle Day outing in this area in 2013.

Here, USA fiddler and gentleman, Skip Gorman is joined by: Denis O’Connor, Charlie Nelligan, Mick Culloty, PJ Teahan and Con Moynihan in a purely impromptu outpouring of great music on an occasion I was fortunate to have a fully charged IPhone and little more that a thimbleful of porter. Click on the image here for more