The ‘end of an era’ was the widely shared comment on Sunday 2 October, which marked the end of a Kilfenora institution – Linnanes pub. Gerard Linnane retired after 30 years as a publican, passing ownership to Burke’s of Clarinbridge; their plans are as yet unknown.
Gerard hosted a massive music session to mark the momentous day, with 30 or more musicians aged from 8 to well past 80 playing over a period of 8 hours. The pub was packed all day as villagers and friends of Kilfenora gathered to mark the occasion. It was a both a joyous and sad occasion.
Colm Nestor brought many of his young trainees, as well as members of his Clare Céilí Band (having just launched their new CD), who all demonstrated their prowess in playing a succession of classic Kilfenora tunes.
They were joined by stalwarts of Kilfenora’s music heritage, including Michael Kelleher, Anne Rynne, JJ Conway, James Devitt and Siobhan O’Donoghue, as well as the younger generation such as Aine O’Donoghue, Aine Griffey and Caoimhe McMahon, and the ‘bouzouki section’ featuring Brendan Organ and Andy Lambert Great guest musicians from near and far in Clare joined in, among them Mike McGrath and Paul Dooley. And several local singers added colour, including Deirdre Scanlan.
Gerard has ensured that ‘Kitty’s Corner’ – named after his mother, the legendary Kitty Linnane, has been THE venue over decades to hear the distinctive sound of the Kilfenora repertoire. The walls echo with the memories of the great musicians of the Kilfenora Céilí Band over the years – Tommy Peoples, Jerry Lynch, Chris Droney, Paddy Mullins and so many more.