From Marin Independent Journal:
On a recent Tuesday night, musicians with fiddles and pennywhistles, flutes, a set of Irish uilleann pipes and hand drums called bodhrans were packed together in a tight circle at the Mayflower Pub in San Rafael, happily playing Irish jigs and reels like “Lark in the Morning” and “Maid Behind the Bar.”
The oldest was 91. The youngest, 25.
“In Marin County, there wasn’t anything like this until five years ago,” 50-year-old Fran Kenny said over the din of music and laughter and conversation.
Originally from Dublin, Kenny, who has lived in San Rafael for decades, was joyfully singing and banging on the bodhran.
“We used to have to go to San Francisco for a session,” he said during a break. “So I feel guilty if I don’t come on a Tuesday because I’m only 15 minutes away.”
The weekly Mayflower sessions are part of an Irish music boom that has spread from Terra Linda to San Rafael to the Ross Valley to West Marin to Petaluma and who knows where next.
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