Yes I know it was on Wednesday 17th, but it’s about time I blogged it isn’t it? Now, you may recall that I play Irish music on a hardingfele (Hardanger fiddle – eight strings). We (the band Full Circle) played two shows at different Irish pubs in Canberra – 2.00pm-5.00pm at PJ O’Reilly’s and then 6.00pm-9.00pm at Filthy McFadden’s – both great Irish venues and each with a different appeciative audience.

PJ’s was a great place to warm-up because they also had Irish dancers and and got into the spirit of St Pat’s Day in a flamboyant way – green beer, green hats, green gas balloons – yeah I wound up with green hair too! Everyone was ready to party – even at 2.00pm on a weekday :-) So it was easy for us to get in the mood and party along with the crowd

And Liz Gregory’s Irish dancers (described as Canberra’s answer to Riverdance) were a treat – two of the dancers are currently first and second place holders in the Australian Irish Dancing Championships. We have played music for them before, and they got us playing jigs and reels for them to dance to – great fun all round!

Then there was Filthy’s! The set-up was a bit of a rush – but the pub has a great atmosphere with lots of dark timber and a good range of Irish beers – including my favourite Guinness! and, like PJ O’Reilly’s was well crowded. With the lights up and a quick sound check we grabbed a quick round of light beers (hey with six hours of playing, you don’t think we’d be drinking full strength stuff do you?) As soon as we launched into the first set the crowd were right into it, singing along and dancing wherever they could find a space. We debuted a couple of new (for us) songs – “New York Girls” and, after 20 years of requests, I finally did “Devil Went down to Georgia” – that great song about a fiddler who meets the devil in a small country to the south of Russia… It went down a treat fully justifying the work we’ve been putting into it for the last couple of months.

It was hot – musically and physically – and I was glad to have eaten a large lunch, because there was no time to eat from the start of the first show until after we’d packed down the gear at the end of the second show! – hence it was light beer the whole time aside from a soothing pint of guinness at the end :-p
I certainly won’t need to see a gym after a workout like that!

Full Circle Band in concert
(Full Circle in concert)