The Dubliners in Helsingborg (Sweden)
17 March 2007
The Dubliners started their 45th year in the town Helsingborg, on the south west in Sweden on St. Patrick`s day. Konserthuset takes around 1200 people, and it was nearly full. And what a fantastic reception they gave them. They enjoyed it, sang along, clapped their hands and stamped their feets, from the first bars. Even though it didn`t start too well for the boys, because Eamonn were having problems with the sound on his guitar from the beginning and over halfway into the first set. At that point he had nearly given up, but Sean generously switched and from there it was pure magic. They followed the same setlist as last year until Patsy declared that he had received a note in the dressing room, saying “Please, please, play The Nightingale”. And they did. A great song for them. And that they have said all the years that they only rehears on stage in front of an audience is true. They hadn`t figured out how to end the song, so it just fell apart because every one of them started laughing. Of course it was a special night for them, St.Patrick`s day, but even more so for Patsy who had got his daughter and her lovely family down from Gothenburg. That probably made him give even a little bit extra this night. And as always a great show man and good with the audience. But the great thing with this night was that all five of them had their big moment with long and big applauses. It started with Barney who as always captivated the audience with his love song.
After the break it was Sean`s turn who sang great on “The night visiting song”. It is a simple song, but it was beautiful. This day they opened the mandolin duet with a tune that is actually called “St. Patrick`s day”, which they combined with “The Mullingar races”. Again the audience gave them a big applause. And like that it continued, now with Patsy`s “Finnegan`s wake” and “ Paddy on the railway”. Both songs he can interact with the audience. John had chosen to do another one of his own composition, this time “St. Patrick`s cathedral”. That was also very very beautiful, and in the long ovation he gave all the credit for it to Eamonn, who had made arrangement. He then continued with his selection. I`m not good at remembering instrumental titles, but I`m quite sure they started with “Drag that fiddle”. It turned eventually into “The Irish washerwoman”, and Patsy went over to Barney and invited him to a dance. And so they did their private little “Riverdance” performance.
Three encores, ending with “Molly Malone”. Let`s hope they keep it fresh during the coming tours, and introduces new (old) songs and tunes into the set. That will do them good. Patsy alone
has hundreds of songs to choose from, and knows every one of Luke`s.
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Review and all photographs by Per