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Music of the Blaskets passes on to a new generation

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An Taoiseach Micheál Martin got to enjoy the wonderful music and song of the Blasket Islands – past and present – when he officiated at the launch of a new book and CD tracing its history and progress.

Taoiseach, Micheál Martin with descendants of the Islanders, from left, Deirdre and Aoife Granville and Róisín Ní Chéilleachair

Beauty An Oileáin – Music and Song of the Blasket Islands was officially launched at Ionad an Bhlascoid in Dun Chaoin where the Fiamnna Fáil leader was treated to a rousing session to mark the occasion.

The venture, by Claddagh Records, follows the signing of a worldwide licensing agreement with Universal Music Ireland.

An Taoiseach, Micheál Martin, with, from left, Lorcán Ó Cinnéide, James Morrissey,hMinister for Education, Norma Foley, Rosemary Collier and Mary Martin

The updated book and CD builds on an earlier collection produced by Claddagh in 1992.

The new collection is more extensive and features recordings of music and song made with descendants of the islanders such as Áine Cheaist Uí Laoithe, Eilín Ní Chearna, Róisín Ni Chéilleachair and Deirdre and Aoife Granville.

They have been particularly influenced by Dálaigh’s music and that of Tom na hInise or Tom Pheaidí Mhuiris.

The limited edition book and CD set commemorates and preserves the music and song of the Blasket Island.

Pictures: Valerie O’Sullivan

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