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Cromwell sings Sean Nos.

John Cromwell

Now there’s a headline you thought you never see,and before you have visions of the bould Oliver sitting in an illicit sheebeen skulling back some illegal hooch,let me reassure you,that its not him.

The Cromwell refered to above is none other than that old sea-dog, bon viveur and raconteur Finglas native John Cromwell.

Presently John is working on a project which he has wittingly dubbed “John Nos”.He will be singing the old songs in the old style.However,while this has been done before,John is looking towards the seminal song collector and recorder Alan Lomax. 

During his career Lomax had amassed a collection of over 17,000 recordings.These songs were recorded everywhere – factories,fields,prisons,homes,public houses etc.

In similar vein to Alan Lomax,John Cromwell will also record everywhere.

I was lucky enough to acompany John and another friend Patrick Tuite on a boat trip to Irelands Eye,where to an audience of two humans and probably one million gannets,John sang that old Clare (Connaught) standard “The rocks of bawn”.

I recorded the track on a smartphone and while the quality is raw,it does capture the essence of this Finglas mans quest and is a road-map of what the completed John Nos project will sound like.


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