In Scotland, as in Ireland, folk songs serve as memories, of places and the dead who once inhabited them. When the Song Dies is a poetic documentary that weaves stories, songs and memories from across Scotland exploring the theme of change. Bringing the audience under the captive spell of the old ways, the film is a poignant reminder that the dead linger on, all around us, in the houses and landscapes we live in, and in the language and music of our culture.
English / 15 min. / 2012 / Transgressive North with Deerstalker Films
Features a screening of the documentary When the Song Dies alongside live performances by master performers:
Kathleen MacInnes was born and brought up in South Uist, Westen Isles of Scotland, in a Gaelic speaking home, and has enjoyed an intersecting career in television, as an actress, presenter and singer.
She has featured in Transatlantic Sessions, Pelicula Films’ long-running music series for BBC and RTE in the company of world class musicians like Aly Bain, Jerry Douglas and Alison Krauss and has been sought after for collaborations with Bela Fleck, Liam O’Maonlai (Hothouse Flowers), Oumou Sangare and Tiamane Diabate from Mali, Rab Noakes and Jim Sutherland.
One of Ireland's leading traditional fiddle-players, Paddy Glackin is a Dublin man proud of his strong links to County Donegal. Paddy attended classical music lessons in Dublin and developed a formidable technique still evident in his bowing. In the mid 1970's he recorded and played with Ceoltoiri Laighean and shortly after was to record the first of his solo albums for the Gael Linn label. His eponymous debut album is still regarded as a classic.
Paddy recorded duet albums with the uilleann piper Paddy Keenan and Dublin keyboard experimentalist, Jolyn Jackson. He was invited to be the first fiddle player in seminal traditional music group The Bothy Band and spent 18 months with what was to be one of the most influential and popular of the great Irish bands of the 1970's.
A noted commentator and lecturer on Irish music, Paddy is also in demand as a session player. He is as comfortable playing the music of John Cage as he is sitting down to play tunes with piper Liam O’Flynn or in in the company of friends Andy Irvine, Donal Lunny, Mike McGoldrick and John Doyle.
Doimnic Mac Giolla Bhríde
Doimnic Mac Giolla Bhríde, from the northwest Gaeltacht of Donegal, has been immersed in the culture of the area from a young age. This area, which is the last Gaelic speaking area in Ulster, preserves not only the Donegal sean-nós songs but also songs from all over Ulster. As a young singer his main influences were Caitlín Ní Dhomhnaill, Lillis Ó Laoire, Áine Bn. Uí Laoi, Mairead Ní Mhaonaigh and his mother Nellie Nic Giolla Bhríde. He studied music at university and now works as a full-time musician. He has released five highly commended CDs, Saol na Suáilce (solo CD) Siansaí (choir CD) Guaillimh a’ chéile (CD with Scottish musician Griogair Labhruidh) Smúidghealach (CD with string quintet) Sona do Cheird (newly composed songs) and has also published a book and CD for children Ící Pící. The promotion of the sean-nós tradition is his greatest motivation and as well as teaching sean-nós, Doimnic is the director of three sean-nós choirs, Cór Thaobh a’ Leithid from Donegal, which he founded, Cór Uí Chanáin in Derry and the Belfast choir, Cór Loch Laoi. In 2009 he won the prestigious Corn Uí Riada, the highest accolade in Ireland for sean-nós singers. His most recent CD Sona do Cheird has just won album of the year at the Nós awards.
Naisrín Elsafty is an Irish-Egyptian singer, notable as a distinguished exponent of sean-nós singing, an unaccompanied and heavily ornamented style characteristic of the Irish-speaking area where she grew up.
She is one of the younger daughters of Treasa Ní Cheannabháin, a native of County Galway and a fine singer in the sean-nós tradition, and Saber Elsafty, an Egyptian doctor. She was raised with her sisters and her twin brother in the Conamara Gaeltacht in the West of Ireland.
Naisrín and her family retain links with the Middle East, and in 2008 she and her mother were detained for a time in Gaza after slipping across the border from Egypt while carrying money collected in Ireland for Palestinian families.
Naisrín comes from a family of musicians, and has performed widely in Irish at festivals and gatherings.
Ghlac sí páirt in Transaltantic Sessions, an tsraith fhad-bhunaithe ag Pelicula Films ag BBC agus RTÉ, i gcomhluadar le ceoltóirí den chéad scoth ar nós Aly Bain, Jerry Douglas agus Alison Krauss agus bhí ceoltóirí ar nós Bela Fleck, Liam Ó Maonlaí (Hothouse Flowers), Oumou Sangare agus Tiamane Diabate ó Mali, Rab Noakes agus Jim Sutherland ar a a lorg le bheith ag seinm léi.