Hedgehog Knits

Adventures in knitting from the eastern edge of Canada.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Gone home.

I had a really great week back home in Newfoundland. I played at a benefit concert for the little girl I mentioned last week. I attended a great local geology conference, gave what I think was a pretty good presentation, and spent some time with family. The biggest and most memorable event might have been the enormous snowstorm last Tuesday, which shut down the city and caused half of the conference to be re-scheduled - St. John's is still shovelling out from under five-foot high snow drifts. But this all was overshadowed by some sad news that arrived last Saturday. Dermot O'Reilly had died very suddenly of a massive heart attack.

It's no secret to those who know me that I am a big fan of folk music, and Irish/Newfoundland folk music in particular. My whole family is involved in the local music scene in St. John's, and I grew up listening to recordings of Ryan's Fancy (of which Dermot was a member), a band that my father idolized. In more recent years, my family has gotten to know the O'Reilly's, and my younger brother has worked on several recording projects and preformances with Dermot and counted him as a friend. DH and I considered ourselves incredibly lucky and honoured to have had Dermot and Fergus O'Byrne play at our wedding just a year and a half ago. Dermot was a real gentleman, and I've never heard anyone say a bad thing about him. He was a true legend of folk music in Newfoundland, a place where we take our love of music pretty seriously.

It was kind of surreal to have been at home when this happened, and to watch all of the local media coverage, to attend the wake, and share grief with so many friends, fellow musicians and fans. It was certainly a shock to everyone. He will be sorely missed.



Blogger Glenna C said...

Hi Kelly!
Wow, sounds like you had quite a week. I suppose it is at least fortunate that you were there to be able to attend the services!

Glad to have you back in blogland.

1:43 p.m.  
Blogger Marianne said...

I am so sorry to hear about Dermot, what an exceptional man/human being!
He will live on forever in the heart and minds of all who loved him, passing those stories down for generations to come.

Glad you're back.

7:27 a.m.  

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