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TITLE
MusicMemory Store - Philip Todd chooses "An Eala Bhán" by Éamonn Doorley, Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh, Julie Fowlis & Ross Martin
EXTERNAL ID
PC_ACG_MMS_07
PLACENAME
N/A
DATE OF IMAGE
2010
PERIOD
2010s
SOURCE
An Comunn Gàidhealach
ASSET ID
21669
KEYWORDS
music
songs
MusicMemory Store - Philip Todd chooses "An Eala Bhán" by Éamonn Doorley, Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh, Julie Fowlis & Ross Martin

Philip Todd is studying film and television at the RSAMD in Glasgow. He has many interests and passions but his ultimate dream is to be a film director, make good films and maybe change the world... even just a little bit. He loves to sing and since learning his first Gaelic song in 2007 he has enjoyed performing and competing quite regularly. He won the Silver Pendant in 2009, and he has also started learning to speak the language. At the Royal National Mòd in 2008 he came first in a traditional competition with the song An Eala Bhàn.

Dual [CD] (Machair Records; Released Oct 2008 - A collaborative exploration of traditional Irish and Scottish music by Éamon Doorley, Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh, Julie Fowlis and Ross Martin.

A very popular Mòd song for soloists and choirs, this song was written whist fighting in France during the Great War, by the famous North Uist bard, Donald MacDonald (1887-1967) known as Dòmhnall Ruadh Chorùna (Red Donald of Coruna). He was a legendary war poet in the Scottish Gaelic language.

"I like visual storytelling. I like cinema. I like 'An Eala Bhàn' because it is cinematic. Images in and of themselves can be powerful but cinema is about the contrasting of images to create meaning and emotion. 'An Eala Bhàn' is meaningful, emotive and visual. In it we have the high misty mountains, the glens, the lochs and the white swan, contrasted with cannon's roar, smoke, and the trenches. A woman in a warm, sweet-smelling bed waking happy, whole... contrasted with a man sick at heart, losing hope of ever winning through. He is imbued with such utter longing, that his hair which once grew ginger has now turned all but white. When I hear or sing this song I somehow understand the emotions being communicated because I feel them just as Dòmhnall Ruadh Chorùna felt them. I am there in the freezing trench, I am gazing westwards and I am longing for home, and for her. The words and the melody blend together to create images, and spark feelings. Surely this is the magic of music. 'An Eala Bhàn' is an emotional journey of longing, a meaningful ballad of images: a visual story."

This is one of the contributions to the MusicMemory Store project which is being run as part of the build-up to the National Mòd 2010 in Caithness. A variety of local people have been asked to select a favourite traditional or Gaelic music track which has a personal meaning for them, and to share the music and the story with the public.

The project seeks to raise the profile of the value of traditional and Gaelic music within the community and its relationship to the National Mòd 2010 which is being hosted in Caithness for the very first time, from 8 to 16 October.

Copies of the albums containing their chosen track are available to borrow from Wick and Thurso libraries. A new contribution will be published each week from May until the start of the Mòd.

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MusicMemory Store - Philip Todd chooses "An Eala Bhán" by Éamonn Doorley, Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh, Julie Fowlis & Ross Martin

2010s

music; songs

An Comunn Gàidhealach

MusicMemory Store

Philip Todd is studying film and television at the RSAMD in Glasgow. He has many interests and passions but his ultimate dream is to be a film director, make good films and maybe change the world... even just a little bit. He loves to sing and since learning his first Gaelic song in 2007 he has enjoyed performing and competing quite regularly. He won the Silver Pendant in 2009, and he has also started learning to speak the language. At the Royal National Mòd in 2008 he came first in a traditional competition with the song An Eala Bhàn. <br /> <br /> Dual [CD] (Machair Records; Released Oct 2008 - A collaborative exploration of traditional Irish and Scottish music by Éamon Doorley, Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh, Julie Fowlis and Ross Martin. <br /> <br /> A very popular Mòd song for soloists and choirs, this song was written whist fighting in France during the Great War, by the famous North Uist bard, Donald MacDonald (1887-1967) known as Dòmhnall Ruadh Chorùna (Red Donald of Coruna). He was a legendary war poet in the Scottish Gaelic language. <br /> <br /> "I like visual storytelling. I like cinema. I like 'An Eala Bhàn' because it is cinematic. Images in and of themselves can be powerful but cinema is about the contrasting of images to create meaning and emotion. 'An Eala Bhàn' is meaningful, emotive and visual. In it we have the high misty mountains, the glens, the lochs and the white swan, contrasted with cannon's roar, smoke, and the trenches. A woman in a warm, sweet-smelling bed waking happy, whole... contrasted with a man sick at heart, losing hope of ever winning through. He is imbued with such utter longing, that his hair which once grew ginger has now turned all but white. When I hear or sing this song I somehow understand the emotions being communicated because I feel them just as Dòmhnall Ruadh Chorùna felt them. I am there in the freezing trench, I am gazing westwards and I am longing for home, and for her. The words and the melody blend together to create images, and spark feelings. Surely this is the magic of music. 'An Eala Bhàn' is an emotional journey of longing, a meaningful ballad of images: a visual story."<br /> <br /> This is one of the contributions to the MusicMemory Store project which is being run as part of the build-up to the National Mòd 2010 in Caithness. A variety of local people have been asked to select a favourite traditional or Gaelic music track which has a personal meaning for them, and to share the music and the story with the public.<br /> <br /> The project seeks to raise the profile of the value of traditional and Gaelic music within the community and its relationship to the National Mòd 2010 which is being hosted in Caithness for the very first time, from 8 to 16 October. <br /> <br /> Copies of the albums containing their chosen track are available to borrow from Wick and Thurso libraries. A new contribution will be published each week from May until the start of the Mòd.