We received this lovely review for The Emigrant Woman's Tale from Colum Sands of BBC radio Ulster's Folk Club programme 

We've come to the end of a wonderful Fiddlers Green Festival here in Rostrevor - the 29th festival.

Tom McFarland and I are  starting out on our first gigs of this year by getting across the water for a lovely wee tour to visit some great folk clubs in Scotland and England

I've fulfilled a long held ambition this weekend past, to have a stay at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Co. Monaghan.

The story behind one of the best known Irish women's songs  

The Spinning Wheel (John Frances Waller) 

 Mellow the moonlight to shine is beginning
Close by the window young Eileen is spinning
Bent o’er the fire her blind grandmother sitting
Is crooning and moaning and drowsily knitting

The Spinning Wheel is one of the most famous Irish folksongs  and was one of the first songs I learned as a child.When I first learned it as a little girl I pictured this beautiful young girl gazing longingly out of the window, dressed of course in a perfect long skirt, with long hair and an angelic face!!   The old lady was knowingly sitting in the corner  ....   I can still see the sash window, the moon shining, the wood outside where the young lovers ended up walking ...  Isn't it funny the pictures that stay in  your head with a song:))  It was written in the late 1800s by John Frances Waller (1909-1894) .

Group singing sessions start up again next week (2nd October) on Wednesday nights in An Cuan in Rostrevor at 7.30pm. 


The scientists have now proven that singing is good for you .... Read on to see some of the ways in which you can benefit from throwing back your head, opening your mouth and joining in!  

Clough Mór means big stone in Irish ... and the Big Stone dominates the local landscape here in Rostrevor .... It lies at the top of Slieve Meen in the Mourne Mountains about 1000ft above the village.  Legend says it was thrown by the giant Finn McCool ... Here's the story...

Taking part in a well known festival in your home village is a special honour .... here are some of my memories of the week ...


It was so beautiful here on the last Sunday of June - we headed up into the Mournes at the Bloody Bridge - walking away from the sea for a change...


A big welcome to 2013!!  

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  • Feb 5

    The Emigrant Woman's Tale


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    Emigrant Woman's Tale

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    Emigrant Woman's Tale