This isn't the first time I have mentioned my niece Katie in this blog. Living in western Ireland, she is a talented singer and musician - specialising in flutes, pipes and whistles.
It is now ten years since her father, my big brother Paul died so unexpectedly. He was also a talented musician and singer and Katie grew up with music - especially Irish traditional music. Perhaps it can take a full decade to begin to process the loss of a parent.
Finally, Katie has penned an affectionate song of her own about Paul. It is as simple as it is honest and sweet. Achieving that in a song of remembrance is ironically quite difficult. It would be very easy to layer the sorrow on far too thick. To be too darned clever.
I know that I am biased but I think Katie has come up with something quite special that will resound for listeners who never even knew that Paul existed. All human beings can relate to loss. It touches us all.
Please give Katie's song a listen via YouTube. It is called "When You Were Big and I Was Small". If heaven existed, Paul would now be looking down and blushing self-consciously about a song inspired by him, but nevertheless very proud of his daughter's composition and her continuing talent.
You could also visit her website katietheasby.com .
a nice way to remember your brother when his daughter writes a good song.ReplyDelete
Maybe better than a gravestone.Delete
I think she is a talented song writer and singer. It is full hearted Irish. So evocative of a loved childhood. Dancing on her father's shoes. I listened several times, to absorb it. Thanks for passing this along to us.ReplyDelete
I hope you will share it with others who would listen Joanne.Delete
That is a beautiful song and truly touched my heart. I remember dancing standing on my father's shoes. I guess most little girls do that. In my opinion a full decade is not nearly long enough to process the loss of a parent. Is that picture your brother and Katie?ReplyDelete
Yes it is Bonnie. She will be 44 in October.Delete
A lovely song sung beautifully. You must miss your brother so Katie's song is a happy one to listen to.ReplyDelete
Paul was a very special man - just like your Paul Thelma.Delete
Good job I am not wearing any make-up. It would have come down in streaks as I was crying nearly all the way through the song just now. My Dad is still alive (and hopefully will be around for years), but he almost died two years ago, and we are all conscious of how frail he has become. The song reminded me so much of how it was when he was big and I was small.ReplyDelete
Biased or not, Katie has a beautiful singing voice and is very talented. Did she also play the flute for the recording of this song?
Yes she did Meike and strange to say this - I am delighted that the song made you cry.Delete
It is a most beautiful song, sung by a lovely voice.ReplyDelete
She has a most evocative singing voice - just as my motherhad when she was young. Thank you Frances.Delete
There's a beautiful honesty about both the song and her voice. Her Dad would have been proud.ReplyDelete
Thank you Cro. That's a nice thing to say.Delete
I can't seem to find the video YP. YouTube tells me it is not available.ReplyDelete
I am sure it is a beautiful song though and would most likely make me think of my Dad and cry.
I just clicked on it again and the link was fine. It can be good to cry - to let some of those feelings out.Delete
Lovely song YP. I saw Kate at Doolin Folk Festival in 2018.ReplyDelete
Her birth name was Kate but she has always been known as Katie.Delete
A beautiful, lilting voice. And a song of the heart. A magic combination.ReplyDelete
I am pleased that you agree Mary.Delete
Your niece has a beautiful, strong voice and I love that song. Her style reminds me of Stan Rogers, a Canadian singer.ReplyDelete
Thanks. I can see where you are coming from with that comparison Lily.Delete
I remember you posting a song featuring your niece a few years ago. I admired her voice then and I admire it still. The sentiments are beautiful without being 'mushy' and I'd be very proud if that had been written in my memory..ReplyDelete
Yes Graham - it isn't "mushy". It is authentic. Thanks for your nice comment.Delete
He would be proud! I'll give it a listen when I have a chance.ReplyDelete
I hope you do Steve.Delete
How do YOU feel about your brother's demise?ReplyDelete
I loved him and still miss him. He left a hole in my life that will never be filled.Delete
Oh, so beautiful, Neil. What a voice she has. And the melancholy instruments making such beautiful sounds for those wonderful words sung with such loving sentiment. So heartfelt. I was thinking of my dad while listening, of course. The pain of the loss does not ever quite leave your heart.ReplyDelete
Thank you Donna. Katie played the pipes and whistles in the backing music.Delete
What a beautiful way to remember her dad!ReplyDelete
Thank you for listening to it Jennifer.Delete
Katie's song to her father, your brother, reminds me of the annual music festival in Kinvarra, a magical place by the sea, about an hour's drive from Galway town. I can imagine Katie singing this song unexpectedly, in the folk pub, towards the evening's close.ReplyDelete
I think we all remember Katie's line, *I stood upon your feet, we danced together,* but I was also struck by, *Last song of the summer was the cuckoo/Outside the window of your room.*
And I will remember always, *His soul flew out the window late June.*
I have been to Kinvarra and so has Katie. In fact, she has sung and played there. She lives in County Clare. Thanks for listening carefully to the song John.Delete
Grand yourself to hear that Katie played in Kinvarra, or Kinvara as now they say; and you a sojourner there!ReplyDelete
In a Kinvara pub I met Frank O'Connor's daughter, who makes her home there after living in America, where her father wrote for The New Yorker.
There was a Kinvara scribe who had not long died and I purchased his book, *Come Here I Want You,* which is full of the craic.
I like Galway very much, with its breezy promenade and its fast-running river, and the brick terraces on the edge of town, the wee couthy pubs.
This our life, why couldn't your brother have enjoyed a longer innings? Isn't fair.
In Earthly Powers, Anthony Burgess has James Joyce appear. Joyce only speaks two words. He says, *Ach, life's strange!*
Joyce was good with words but clearly bad with numbers. He said three or four words not two. "Ach" "life" "is" (ignoring the abbreviation) "strange". I went through primary school with a girl called Joyce.Delete
It must be my lucky day. To have visited on the very day you introduced that song. Any girl who stood upon her father's feet as they danced will be touched. My father sang and danced to Irene Goodnight except he changed the name to Ilene, his sister who had died aged 24, and so taught family history at the same time. There is more going on than the dancing when father and daughter bond like that. Sorry, I've gone off on a tangent, you have sparked my memories. I'm sure that song will be part of your family history. It's beautiful.ReplyDelete
What a lovely response Pauline. How delightful that the song sparked memories of your special bond with a father who loved you.Delete
Such a beautiful song. She has captured the sweet sorrow so well. I have listened to it over and over, tears streaming. For me and my sisters it also ended too soon but on a winter's day in June. 42 years on the memories have not dimmed and the pain is just a reminder of the strength of the love that was at the heart of our childhood. Such power we have as parents.ReplyDelete
I'll be buying Katie's album when I get to grips with the technology and spreading her fame down here in the south.
Thank you again for sharing your talented family with us.
Katie's lovely voice reminded me of Dolores Keane and now I'm listening to Sean Keane's One More Hour.
I am sure that Katie will be very happy that her song has echoed so meaningfully in a home faraway on The South Island of New Zealand. Thanks for calling by again Adele.Delete
Ach, poor Joyce and poorer Lucia his tragic daughter.ReplyDelete
The pain in his eyes caused by syphilis was excruciating; he used to say, *I am paying for my adventures in Nighttown in my youth.*
I just looked up Nighttown - Joyce Project: there is a grainy photograph of pretty Dublin girls on the game.
I also found - The Madams of Nighttown; or a Dublin lupanarology.
I grew up in a top-floor tenement in Argyle Street with the tramcars passing below. The neighbour one floor down was the man who ran the girls in the West End. My father said he looked like Lee J. Cobb. He always called my mother *Lady Haggerty*. My father said he was a courteous, well-tailored man, but added, *Many a time he wanted to stand me a pint in the Kelvin Bar, but I always said No Thanks.* His wife was the quietest lady who thought highly of my mother.
*Ach, life's strange!*
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