One of the reasons I love traveling is seeing the places where art forms were born. Being in these places adds an appreciation for the art that you can’t get from museums or books. I often find that art forms make more sense once you see the people and landscapes that inspired them. For instance, Spanish surrealism seems somehow less surreal when driving through arid regions of Spain surrounded by rainbows. Similarly, I have a deep appreciation for the realism Impresssionism achieves now that I have witnessed the speckled light that dances along the rolling hills of Southern France.
And now, having explored the Green Isle, Irish music just seems to make more sense. Austria may be the home of hills alive with the sound of music, but the dramatic landscapes of Ireland just make me want to sing and dance. When the sun reveals the white sheep that dot the green hill, or shimmers on the waves as they roll and crash on the crags, or illuminates the red roses climbing their walls, I just want to celebrate with song. And that is what the Irish musicians do in every pub, every night. It just makes sense.
To illustrate my point, listen to one of my favorite Irish traditional tunes*. As you listen, scroll through these photos and take in the wonderful pairing between the music and the land.
(*By the way, last March Pandora placed a St. Patrick’s Day station on my playlist, and since then it has been one of my favorite things. I find it really helps me focus when I work!)