(Warning: Awkward and predictable generalisations ahead) In my usual burst of late winter curiosity I sat down to watch some of Celtic Connections via the iPlayer. I'm trying hard to improve my taste and understanding and to gain greater appreciation for that broad church of Celtic sounds that are bundled together there. Of course the musicians are impressive albeit most guitars are assigned the role of silent strumming whilst the fiddles and squeeze boxes create a crashing wall of sound. Yes they can all play and they all dress and behave like reasonable people, it's very civilised for all of it's rough heritage. Rock music in reverse I suppose and goodish things will always find some natural order and an audience.
The problem is that after a while what I call the "Donald" effect takes place where after a bit I hear Gaelic lyrics and melodies distorted into lines such as "Donald drove the Moomins out", I can't really explain it and I can't unhear it once it begins. Maybe it's the old White Heather club influence when every other song was some kind of Jacobite lament to various kings and moody, feeble chancers somewhere across the water. Very romantic and plaintive but ultimately depressing, designed to keep you in your place, longing for some conveniently distorted past life. It's nothing to do with made up Scandinavian woodland knitted sock creatures either. It makes no sense. I blame Andy Stewart and the Dixie Ingram dancers and TV that was made up of 425 lines of shades of grey, and of course my parents (these good folks below are neither parents or relatives).