Our Song of the Day is The lion and fox (séadnadh mór) from the forthcoming album Preab Meadar by improvising singer and composer Lorcán Mac Mathúna who has written for and featured regularly on FRUK and traditional fiddler Daire Bracken. We featured them in session last year (you can hear that session here), their new project Preab meadar is groundbreaking. The chances are you have heard nothing like this before.
Preab meadar is something brand new in contemporary trad and Celtic music. 1000 years in the making, it is a sensational new dance music style, of complex rhythms and elaborate lyrics.
Comprising unprecedented rhythms and singing style; it owes its inception to early and medieval Celtic Literature. In particular it is grounded in Gaelic strict-metre syllabic poetry of the medieval period 600AD – 1600AD.
ABOUT: THE LION AND FOX (SÉADNADH MÓR)
A bard in the service of the Breifne chieftain, Brian Maguire, Tadgh Dall Ó Huiggín was a poet of exquisite skill. His 1588 poem in praise of his patron, “the Lion and Fox,” uses the device of an old fable to comment on the treacherous political landscape leading up to the nine-years’ war.
Within 20 years of the writing of this poem the Gaelic world which had existed, unchanged for over 2000 years, had completely collapsed.
The last Gaelic chieftains had fled after the disaster of Kinsale and the signing of the treatty of Mellifont -“the Flight of the Earls,”- and the place of the File and the Gaelic tribal world in general had been eradicated forever.
In this poem Ó Huiggín sticks fastidiously to the 8 and 7 syllable pattern of Seadnadh Mór.
In collaboration with the Chester Beatty library, the eponymous debut CD, PREABMEADAR, will be released on Sunday November 9th (2:00pm) with a free gig in the Chester Beatty Library in Dublin Castle.