Language around Irish trad music is “hugely derogatory”, according to one of its 21st century defenders.
An impromptu trad session on board a delayed Aer Lingus flight last week got a mixed response online between people celebrating traditional Irish culture and people who are tired of “diddley-eye” tendencies.
@the_amanda_ade Gotta love the Irish 🇮🇪💚 #CavanTownCCE #irishtiktok #fyp ♬ original sound - Amanda Adé
Trad musician and Tyrone Productions Director Edel Fox told Moncrieff there’s an argument to be made that no one likes loud music in a confined space.
“That could be said regardless of the genre of music that was being played in that situation,” she said.
“I’ll also say I have great memories of that age - they were teenagers for the most part – and they were brought to Germany as part of their Ceoltas group.
“It's so lovely to see enthusiasm and excitement amongst that age group for their music and the passion.”
Ms Fox said there seems to be a “horribly negative attitude towards the tradition at large” when it comes to Irish music, which she finds “really disappointing”.
“There's something known as cultural cringe,” she said.
“It’s cringe that’s so deep-seated people don't even fully recognize that they have it within them.
“It's a lack feeling, a lack of respect or regard for native languages or aspects of heritage.
“Maybe we don't even fully know that that's what we're trying to do.”
'Trad is part of their identity'
Ms Fox didn’t find the negative reaction to the trad group on the plane – and trad music in general - that surprising.
“There's a language definitely around traditional music that's quite derogatory in a sense,” she said.
“For example, the word ‘diddley-eye’ is hugely derogatory.”
She said trad music has become a genre that people associate with “talking over while you’re in the pub” rather than something you listen to and appreciate.
“It's something [the musicians] may have grown up with from a young age,” she said.
“It’s part of their identity.
“[Trad] is probably arguably the most vibrant, traditional or folk music that there is in existence at the moment.”
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