Newtownforbes/Longford Comhaltas ceolteoirí na hÉireann (CCE) recently held the launch night for their newly published Leabhar Fonn/‘Book of Tunes’.
The launch took place on Friday, December 6, in McGowan’s pub in Newtownforbes, with the action commencing from 7:30pm that evening and music from some of the county’s finest talents.
Laura Glennon of Newtownforbes/Longford CCE branch said the event was ‘very well supported’ by the people of Longford and musicians young and old.
Laura remarked, “It was launched on Friday night. We had music from local trad bands and other musicians within the county as well.
“Initially, we had a junior session from 7:30pm to 8:30pm. That involved our own underage music students from the branch.
“Then after that at 9pm the adults came in. They were joined by well-known musicians from around the county.”
The committee of Newtownforbes/Longford CCE thanked everyone in attendance for what was described as a ‘great night’.
Laura stated, “It was very well supported and it was very much appreciated by the branch to have so many locals there and the support of the musicians themselves.
“They are always fantastic at supporting each other when it comes to events like this. It made for a great night.”
The book itself is a culmination of four music booklets previously published by the branch under the watchful eyes of Donna McCann and Michael Lennon.
“When the branch started we had our own booklets which we produced ourselves. One of the tutors within the branch, Donna McCann, put the booklets together.” Laura Glennon explained.
“So it was really a case of taking those tunes and putting them all into one booklet.
“A lot of work went into putting it together by Donna and by our designer, Lorretta McGarry, who designed the brochure itself.”
The ‘book of tunes’ is now available for purchase from any of the members of the Newtownforbes/Longford CCE. Students of the branch will receive a copy as part of their registration fee for the year.
Laura said, “We have the book for sale if anyone wants to buy it.” Before adding, “When our students join for a term they are given a copy of the book, as it is part of their registration fee.
“If anyone wants to purchase one for a Christmas present or any reason, we have some available for sale from any of the committee members.”
The launch of the book was dedicated to the memory of Mairtín Ó Muirí, a Monaghan native and former teacher of St Micheal’s Longford town, who had a strong passion for traditional music and left a lasting impact on the music scene in the county.
The celebrated musician and Tarmonbarry resident passed away in 2017 and, in conjunction with the Irish National Teachers' Organisation (INTO), it was decided the book be released in his memory.
Laura explained, “We wanted something that would be memorable and keep his memory going in the branch.
“Mairtín would have been involved when we set up the branch originally and he would have come to a lot of the sessions with the group. It was always fantastic to have him there.
“It was really to do something that would be quite memorable for everyone concerned and mark the occasion.”, said Laura before stating none of this would have been possible without the hard work of the committee.
In terms of the future of Newtownforbes/Longford CCE, registration will take place in the new year. For anyone seeking any further information you can contact the branch directly or via Facebook by searching Newtownforbes Longford CCE.
Laura said, “We will be having our registration night in probably the third week of January.
“You contact any of the local branch members for any further information.”
Pictures: Shelley Corcoran