Mike Farragher ‘s column at Irish Central called Off the Record is full of wit and wisdom about the Irish music business. A recent essay characterised fans of different Irish artists. Here’s some of the piece:
Don’t Irish music fans come in all flavours? You can tell a lot about a person by what you see in their record collection or their taste in concerts. I’ve been going to concerts on this beat for 15 years or more in this job, and I’ve stared down many a crowd. So, I think I know a thing or two about this. Plus I am Irish, which means I have a dominant judgemental gene that entirely qualifies me for the snarky opinion on everyone I see at these concerts.Celtic Woman - Without fail, you take the mothballs off that QVC Aran sweater you got during the last Paddy’s Day home shopping marathon. You fidget with the rabbit ears atop the television until PBS comes in clear as a bell. Coming to this show for some Irish culture is like going to the Barbie kitchen for a meal, yet there you are, ready to plunk down your donation at pledge time for that latest disc of saccharine-coated culture. Your Tara brooch has been pinned on the Book of Kells silk scarf around your neck (in case it’s drafty), and you are ready to rock!
Van Morrison - Van Morrison: You’ve been listening to this guy for years; heck, he’s been your wingman on any lucky flight in love that you’ve taken. A little Astral Weeks here, a dash of that rakish brogue there, and soon people were waking up without knowing or caring where their undergarments went.
But now, Van is older and so are you. That hippie vibe is intoxicating, which probably explains why you felt the need to take that thick wallet from the back pocket of your expandable waist Dockers and plunked down the Gold AMEX to purchase a block of $250 tickets to that last Astral Weeks Memory Lane Tour that Van did a few years back.
You used to screw to Van, but now Van is screwing you. And you kinda like it.Sinead O’Connor - You’re either a leather-clad, high priestess badass that’s snarling at the world or married to someone who is. There is no in between.
The Wolfe Tones, Derek Warfield and the New Wolfe Tones, or any other rebel trio band with a banjo with Wolfe in their name - You’re one of the many that didn’t get the office memo circulating around which announced that “The Troubles” ended a couple of decades ago. Just when you began to let go of all that anger directed at the Brits, along came Simon Cowell to prove once again, without a shadow of a doubt, that those limey bastards are the devil incarnate.You’ve brought along your son or nephew with you to this show to teach him about his heritage, but it’s no use. He orders a Guinness and Harp mixed pint when the band plays Come Out Ye Black and Tans without a hint of irony.
Daniel O'Donnell - Daniel O’Donnell: You are a close cousin to the Celtic Woman fan; heck, you may even have some of their CDs mixed in with “The Daniel.” The thing that sets you apart from the other species is that you bring all of the disappointments of parenthood to these shows. This boy never makes his mother embarrassed or blames her for how screwed up he is, not like that no-good son that came from your womb. See how he blows a kiss to his mammy from the balcony -- it would take an act of God to get your amaudaun to say “I love you” at the end of his obligatory Sunday afternoon phone call.
Loreena McKennit, Enya, and the like -You are almost certainly a woman, have more than one pair of yoga pants and get indignant when someone refers to God as a male. Let your high school friends from Crestwood walk around with their Michael Kors handbags; your tie-dye knapsack with the pentagrams holds a wallet just fine, thank you very much! Cubicles are for chumps--you can make money in any room that has oil and a massage table. You have an active profile on Match.com because you are sick and tired of dating Dungeon and Dragon Dungeon Masters, but the real secret behind your lack of dates has everything to do with those Birkenstocks.