Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Walshes snug, Stoneybatter

To get a good idea of Walshes pub on Manor Street in Stoneybatter, check out this superb new video by award-winning director and music documentarian Myles O’Reilly.

It's a ballad called "Way Up On The Mountain" by Ye Vagabonds - brothers Diarmuid and Brían Mac Gloinn. The duo currently play Walshes every Monday night.

Walshes and Moss Reid

Walshes has featured in the first two books in the Moss Reid series - a brief scene in Another Case in Cowtown, and the much longer one  in Black Marigolds, about a Christmas pub crawl...

Even at the best of times the highways and byways of Smithfield and Stoneybatter can feel like a cross between Hip City and the Ballinasloe Horse Fair. It was an even more raggedy confusion this evening. 
The pub I was in could be confusing too, from the slightly higgledy-piggledy layout to the sharp contrast between the front bar with its ancient wooden snug areas and the refurbed lounge at the back. The pub’s very name would confuse the grammar police: “Walshes” in the stained glass windows and doors, plain “Walsh” on the main sign outside. 
Read the entire section of the book here.

Postscript  (9/9/2014)

Here's another superb video by Myles O'Reilly of Ye Vagabonds in action, this time singing "Willie O Winsbury". It's an old Scottish ballad that was made famous in these parts by Sweeney's Men, and Andy Irvine probably still does it. You can hear echoes of Andy in their new version too...

The film has a good flavour of life around Manor Street and the top of Arbour Hill, particularly Peter's semi-secret old music shop.

He began it over 40 years ago, originally selling potatoes and gas. I think I prefer the guitars, tripods, bicycles and other brilliant old clobber. The shop is open on Saturdays, and I don't think it does online sales.