…from the slums of Docklands Govan to the Opera Houses of the World… the magic of music…

…as this ol’ Scots Jurassic scribbler heads into dotage, it has always baffled me why sum’thing responds in me when I hear music… real music… not the noises which often pass for that from so many supposed ‘mega stars’ and reality-television-produced ‘celebrities’ … this You Tube piece which has been doing the rounds for a while came across my ear again this morning, and a wee mem’ry thing clicked in my mind… the guy in the clip is a trained operatic singer, with an excellent voice, and the piece he’s chosen is superb… with we Scots and Irish folks, I’m not sure if it’s a Celtic or Gaelic thing but there’s certainly sum’thing in the plaintiff resonance of certain soulful passages which touch us like no others… listen to the opening strings in the video… right there it had me… and I confess a touch of a moist-eyed mem’ry I mentioned above is flooding back even more now as I type this… back in the slums of Docklands Govan in Glasgow, the back-courts area of the tenements most of us lived in were often the sparse stage for men who needed work but could find no employment… dressed in their work jackets or trench coats, with cloth caps, and usually a neck scarf against the biting cold, they would stand in these back courts in the mornings and sing… usually ballads… and man, some of these men could really sing… the stuff of magic for all we families who lived in stretched circumstances… ‘Danny Boy’, ‘I’ll Take You Home Again Kathleen’, ‘Rowan Tree’, and others of that sort… thrown down from the various tenement windows would come a few precious pennies, wrapped in bits of newspaper so they wouldn’t spill when they landed… and often, also a wrapped sandwich or a few homemade biscuits… and even now, I understand my mixed emotions about my deep-rooted hatred of the scourge of poverty that had these men sing/beg for pennies, and yet marvelling in the pleasure their singing brought us… in an all-too-frequently drab existence, their voices gifted us all a bit of much-needed colour… from the slums of Docklands Govan to the Opera Houses of the World… the magic of music… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

10 responses to “…from the slums of Docklands Govan to the Opera Houses of the World… the magic of music…

  1. Brilliant. And very “shivers down the spine”. I taught the cruise choirs this and we always had a great reaction to it. Like me to teach it to you?

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Music makes everything better! Thank you, Sir!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Absolutely beautiful, Seumas. Thank you for sharing. 🙂 — Suzanne


  4. Pingback: …from the slums of Docklands Govan to the Opera Houses of the World… the magic of music… | Seumas Gallacher

  5. michelle213norton

    It won’t let me play it, but being of Scotch-Irish descent, I concur that music (real music) speaks to the heart (like a good yarn, right?!)

    Liked by 1 person

  6. michelle213norton

    Beautiful!! I love that song!

    Liked by 1 person

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