In praise of the Lambeg…

The sound on this is not great, probably because it’s recorded indoors and Willie Drennan’s Lambeg drum is testing the microphone almost to destruction. But if you ever thought (like me) that playing it was just a matter of blattering a goatskin to kingdom come, you can see how the rythyms he uses adhere to old Irish dance steps from the dancer who comes on during the performance. I’m told (by Willie himself) that the only instrument that can effectively be heard above it is the higher pitched fife. As short example of its more natural environment, this Loughbrickland parade appears to be the best example I can find on YouTube.

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty