Archive for January 23rd, 2010


Random/Abstract Drawers and Time Travel


Last week-end, quite spontaneously, I started organizing my random/abstract drawers.  I know of very few people who don’t have atleast one junk drawer.  You know,  a drawer  with no order or purpose to it other than to stash stuff when company comes over.  My husband and I have an over supply of random/abstract drawers, and so after a while we become overwhelmed and we are forced to attack and organize.  I was in the mood to revisit my Irish music collection, so placed my “Celtophile- Masters of Celtic Accordion” c.d. on and started sorting and cleaning.  I had been ignoring my old 2-row b/c accordion and needed have those Irish tunes back in my ear while I did my chores.  No matter how many times I revisit this music, I still have to pause and try to breathe when I hear it.  It invades my body and soul.  Listening  to the greats like Billy McComiskey or Jimmy Keane or Paddy O’Brien can bring nothing but awe.  I once again decided that there was no other music like Celtic accordion music.  As I was sorting pencils, nails, tacs and paper clips my mind boarded time travel.  I was really in an Pub in Dingle.  First  I was in the audience sucking on a beer, then I was dancing , and then  I was playing the accordion myself, connecting completely with the  musicians and people around me. WHOOP!!  By the end of organizing my first drawer I decided that I just had to go down to my own basement and play a few tunes on my B/C for old times sake.  Being very rusty I was frustrated,  but I swore I would  practice regularly from now on.

I began my second drawer project and placed “Troka” in the c.d. player.  This  group  is from Norway, the instrumentation being accordion, fiddle and bowed bass.  I’m sure there are other instruments on the recording, but what fills me up from their music are the rich, long chords of the accordion, the smoothe deep double stops of the fiddle, and the hard drive of the  bowed bass.  So many melodies resemble the Celtic tunes yet they have their own unique flavor.  As I hear the music, my mind,( or maybe my soul),  goes to a more ancient time of sailors sailing the north sea.  As the music plays I imagine that I am transported to an Irish ship which is meeting up with a Norwegian ship.  We eat, we sing, we play our instruments and share the ancient tunes of our ancestors.  By the end of my second drawer I am thoroughly convinced that this Norwegian folk music is as mystical and as beautiful as any music. (I do like to pretend I am Walter Mitty). 

The accordion was at the heart of all this music that took me to places and times so far away.  I cleaned out drawers, but was barely aware of my own sorting and cleaning.  If you ask me what I did last week-end I will tell you that I took a trip through the seas, the skies and heaven, and it was marvelous.  The wind pushing through the reeds with the help of the wide bellows made the magical sounds that took me away.  Okay, so “gag”.  I’m a little shmaltzy, but I can’t help it.  I’m listening to Maria Kalaniemi right now.  She made me do it!!!


January 2010