August 2009 Convention
New York, NY

Midnight Irish Jam Session

Late Friday evening after Sir James Galway’s program, I attended the Midnight Irish Jam Session, organized by Andra Bohnet and featuring renowned Irish flutist Brian McCoy. The session was designed to be an introduction to Irish session playing. Perhaps 75 attended, some playing and some just listening. McCoy and Bohnet were devoted to demystifying session etiquette. They started with simple, well-known tunes like the “Irish Washer Woman” and proceeded to less known tunes often suggested by session attendees. They inroduced and explored the technique of joining sequences of tunes into sets. McCoy and Bohnet provided a gratifying, non-competitive experience for all involved.

—Wendell Dobbs