Jim Carroll

Music, Life and everything else

Guest post – Dingle Bells, the final countdown: Tony Clayton-Lea at Other Voices

Our man in Dingle, Tony Clayton-Lea, sums up the action on the final day of the Other Voices hullabaloo. Big thanks to Tony for the guest blogs and food tips during the week. That’s us done with Co Kerry until …

Thu, Dec 10, 2009, 12:59

   

Our man in Dingle, Tony Clayton-Lea, sums up the action on the final day of the Other Voices hullabaloo. Big thanks to Tony for the guest blogs and food tips during the week. That’s us done with Co Kerry until next year….

It’s all over bar the shouting and scouting around for that quirky Xmas present for the wife. The final day of Other Voices delivered the following: the last minute addition of Adrian Crowley (who, speaking of which, walked into the Goat Street Café just as your guest blogger was tucking into the Best Seafood Chowder on the Dingle Peninsula). Crowley was in good form, as was his band member Steve Shannon, who we bumped into later that night outside Benners Hotel.

The hub of the event is Benners – all the bands gather here, most of them stay here, all of them socialise here at some point during the day and night. Indeed, you gradually become immune to the sight of Brett Anderson tucking into breakfast (what? No crispy bacon and grilled sausages? No wonder he’s so slim!), Richard Hawley cracking jokes (the one about him writing a romantic song for his wife in the hope that she’ll return the favour with nookie is a gag-fest – although maybe it’s the way he tells it) and Speech Debelle lounging around in a tracksuit as she tries to find her bearings following a circuitous journey to the town.

The main sense that your guest blogger receives from all of this sauntering around in a casual manner is that the musicians very quickly come to terms with the lack of a laminated VIP pass dangling around their necks. They have little problem with kids, passers-by and (yes!) even music journalists sidling up to them, saying hello, having a chat, sticking a tape recorder in
their general proximity and asking them questions.

There is so little fuss, bother and bullshit it makes you wonder yet again about the yawning divide between the rock/pop star and their audience, and how that division is more often than not strengthened by factors (agents, marketing, managers, PR spin, and so on) that the pop star would really rather do (and be far better off) without.

It’s a great leveller, this Other Voices lark, is what I’m saying. And, you know, it was a privilege to be a part of it. So thanks a bunch, and goodbye from Dingle. OTR’s normal service of angsty, provocative and barbed blogging will be with you very shortly.

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