My Library-Yeats and now

I love reading. I love books.  My parents indulged my passion was I was growing up. When I was 14, my love affair with Yeats started. The cause was Liam Clancy. He recited excerpts of Yeats’ The Second Coming in concert. With an adolescent sense of drama I embraced it. My parents gave me this […]

Continue Reading

Canada Day 2016

My parents were immigrants to Canada. My dad was Irish, my mum English. At the time they came here they were living in London, a city still bearing the marks of the blitz, still under rationing from the war. Dad was looking for someplace to go and at the time it was a toss up […]

Continue Reading

The things you bring home

One day on the road tends to be very much like another. It’s the same routine, the same questions, the same grind. It just happens against a changing backdrop. The routine is punctuated by moments of  generosity, or serendipity, or hospitality that make you exult in the human. Sometimes, there are unexpected gifts- book, pieces of […]

Continue Reading

Remembrance 2015

    Last year, I was in the UK on Remembrance day. I wrote a  blog post  from there and used a picture I had taken  at the war memorial in Galashiels, Scotland. I made the arty choice of using the “black and white” filter. In doing so, I  completely missed a poignant detail. On the right […]

Continue Reading

Inscriptions

In my family there was a rule- when giving a book as a gift, you had to write something in it. It didn’t have to be much-Merry Christmas, or Happy Birthday or something. I wasn’t sure my older brother Ed knew the rule. The likelihood that he would ever give anyone a book as a […]

Continue Reading

Ron

I’m sad this morning to hear of the passing of Ron Casat. I owe  my life as a musician to him. If you enjoy what I do, then you owe Ron a big thank you. Musically, Ron was my brother, my uncle and my father. Everything I know about stage craft and musicianship I learned […]

Continue Reading

Erebus

The Franklin Expedition to find the Northwest passage occupies a big space in the history of exploration in general and Canadian History in particular. Archaeology buff were thrilled last year with the discovery of the wreck of one of Franklin’s ships, The Erebus in the Victoria Straight. The find was not without controversy, given the support […]

Continue Reading

Mary

My father’s generation, all his brothers and sisters, have passed completely. The days of hearing stories from mouth to ear are gone now. Mary Keelaghan passed away Sunday March 8 at St. James Hospital in Dublin.  My aunt Mary was the last of my dad’s brothers and sisters standing. And I do mean standing. Until a […]

Continue Reading

Room 342

It was late 1992. Me and my legendary Plymouth Voyager were on a long road. I had just signed a contract with Green Linnet Records in Danbury CT, and had a budget for the recording of my new cd. They really wanted Johnny Cunningham to produce the cd. I was going to be in Portland, Oregon […]

Continue Reading

Halloween reflections

It’s 5:20AM on All Saints Day. I’m at an airport. I could be feeling sorry myself, but I’m feeling a pang for my beloved wife. I’m flying off to do a weekend of gigs. She is at home dealing with the kiddie hangover that is the morning after halloween. The 7 year old gets to work […]

Continue Reading