Jimmy McGowan died a few moments ago. He was surrounded by his loving family. He would have turned 58 on Thursday. He would have teed off at nine this morning -- after mass -- at Fountain Hills with a couple of his kids or a roving cast of friends. He would have met me at Lanigan's for a few jars and to catch a Bears, Hawks, or Sox game. He would laugh. He would kid. He would chat. He would smile. He would listen. He would bring comfort. He would bring an open mind. He would console. He would encourage. He would advise. He would shed a tear. He would shake his head in disbelief or in the are-you-f'in-nuts sort of way. He would share. He would give what he could and what he couldn't. He would speak with a glowing heart about his kids, his brothers and sister, his nieces and nephews, his Dad, his Bridie. He was a friend to all and a friend to me. He loved and was loved. He will be in my heart forever. Rest in peace McGowan
(Thank you McGowan family for letting me be part of Jimmy's final days -- you are as your son, father, brother, and uncle was...)
A few weeks to go for the 32nd annual Irish/Celtic Week at Augusta Heritage in Elkins, West Virginia. I will be teaching an intensive tune workshop open to all melody instruments (which was a blast last year!) as was instructing several times over the last three plus decades in the lovely setting of Davis & Elkins College.
Here is a photo of myself, bodhranist/raconteur Myron Bretholtz, and harpist Carol Thompson 25 years ago outside the infamous Ice House on campus taking a break and listening to one of the many sessions which take place round the clock during the week. Still not too late to sign up for the many class offerings. Check it out at the link above...
“As Mankind becomes more liberal, they will be more apt to allow that all those who conduct themselves as worthy members of the community are equally entitled to the protections of civil government. I hope ever to see America among the foremost nations of justice and liberality.” -- George Washington
Hi Folks -- I received a rake of kind messages, emails, phone calls, and home visits asking how I am progressing with my new addition during the last two weeks post-surgery --- unlike this very funny cartoon which several of you have sent me -- I am moving ahead splendidly and hope to be out and about this fair City of Chicargo and beyond within the next couple of weeks. Thank you all for your kind thoughts, support, prayers, jokes, and encouragement!
St. Peter: Before you enter Heaven my son, is there anything you'd like to know? The recently departed Kerry fella: Well, there is one thing -- can you ask St. Paul if the Corinthians ever got back to him?…. :-))