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Subject: Al Purcell - SV: That Time of the month again
From: Johnson Thomas <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Irish Traditional Music List <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Mon, 2 Oct 2000 10:37:03 +0200

text/plain (18 lines)

I think an article in Irish Music Magazine, about a true gentleman
piper, Al Purcell, who passed away last Thursday would be very
appropiate. Al was a wonderful man, a kind, calm, patient teacher ,with
a fund of stories and tales of pipers and piping. I first ran into Al in
1996 at Miltown. Through Al I received my first piping lessons, and my
experience of Al was akin to meeting up with Waterford piper Tommy
Kearney. One felt oneself to be in the presence a Zen master. I met Al
every year since at Miltown Malbay and Tubbercurry. Al loved air playing
and encouraged us to learn a varied repertoire of tunes, hornpipes,
jigs, slides, airs, not just reels, reels and more reels. Al was of the
opinion that it was air playing that really gave a piper a great chance
to utilise the full expressiveness of the uilleann chanter. The small
world of uilleann piping is seemingly in shock at the unexpected passing
of Al. I can't believe that he won't be at Willie Week next year. He'll
be sorely missed as will Tommy McCarthy who passed away shortly before

Thomas Johnson

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