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Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh, Uilleann Piper, 2003 & 2004

Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh, Uilleann Piper, 2003 & 2004

Dublin musician Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh, of Leitrim ancestry, has become internationally known over the last decade for his innovative playing of Irish traditional music on the fiddle, and for his artistic collaborations with musicians and artists in other musics and genres, as well as in Irish traditional music. In recent years he has taken up the viola and Norwegian hardanger fiddle.

But from his teens Caoimhín has also played traditional music on other instruments, whistle and flute among them, and especially also on uilleann pipes (under the tutelage first of Joe Doyle). Having graduated from Trinity College Dublin in physics, he moved for a time to Miltown Malbay, Co Clare, to study the making of uilleann pipes with pipemaker Geoff Wooff.

The selection of videos reproduced here from the collections of the Irish Traditional Music Archive of Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh’s uilleann piping represents his playing as it was in 2003 and 2004, and some of his observations on pipemaking. They were recorded mainly in Caoimhín’s cottage in Miltown Malbay during the Willie Clancy Summer School of July 2003 and also at the international William Kennedy Piping Festival in Armagh city in November 2004, introduced by Eithne Vallely.

With thanks to Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh for permission to reproduce these recordings, and to Eithne Vallely and the William Kennedy Piping Festival for their cooperation.

NC & TH, 1 February 2012