Paddy Jones (1947-2020) was the youngest of Pádraig O’Keeffe’s students. He was born in Knightsmountain, north of Castleisland, and he showed an interest in the music from a young age. Being from a musical family, this interest was encouraged, and he was sent to lessons with the fiddle master which were to have a long-lasting effect. Though he discontinued the lessons after three years out of frustration with his master’s peripatetic lifestyle, he nonetheless maintained a fondness for Pádraig, and helped look after him in his last days. He later continued his musical education with Pat and Willie O’Connell in nearby Cordal, and learned to read staff notation while in school which enabled him to expand his repertoire and scholarship considerably. As he developed in his music, he was able to play with a number of the older generation, including Jack O’Connell of The Lighthouse who mentored him and encouraged him to study of the music and heritage of Sliabh Luachra, but also to appreciate good music no matter where it came from. Like O’Keeffe, Paddy was a great exponent and master of the subtle art of the slow air. He didn’t limit himself to air melodies traditionally played in Sliabh Luachra, but found tunes from far and wide and adapted them the the local style to great effect. His great curiosity led him to explore the world, both geographically and intellectually, but he always maintained a particular love and interest in his native music. It was perhaps only natural that he himself would become a teacher and lecturer, and he developed a great number of the younger generation into excellent and thoughtful members of the Sliabh Luachra tradition. He was honored for his lifelong commitment to the culture of Sliabh Luachra at the 2016 Patrick O’Keeffe festival in Castleisland.
An interesting lecture by Paddy on the music of Sliabh Luachra. You can read the transcript here.
A series of conversations with Eoin Stan O’Sullivan on a wide range of topics; a window into Paddy Jones’ mind: