Ireland is renowned for the music it’s given the world and any time I’ve been to Dublin I’ve always been blown away by the standard to live music. I’ve said it each time and I’ll say it again – I’ve yet to be disappointed by a live performer in the city. That includes everyone from buskers, pub singers in Temple Bar and bands of all varieties.
This weekend I had the added bonus of local knowledge when Elaine’s parents took us to not one but two pubs that the tourists would probably walk past. On the first night, we went to hear some blues in the The Ha’penny Bridge Inn (photo above). I have a video that I took of the guitarist and singer Dermot Byrne, who has a gravelly voice similar Johnny Cash, but can’t get it to load on here at the moment. His slide guitar skills set off a familiar feeling for me – envy. I’ve been trying to teach myself guitar on and off for years now. I’m terrible and haven’t been committed enough to ever get past the complete beginner stage. I always had the idea that I will one day commit myself to learning – whether that means taking lessons, getting Elaine to help or continuing to try to teach myself in a more routine way.
However, I find a big difference now when I try to play than before the myasthenia. The muscles used to hold the guitar in place tire quickly, my arms get achey really quickly and my hands and fingers feel more clumsy than before. So now not only will I have the commitment challenge but I’ll also have the MG making it more difficult for me to improve.
Watching the blues superstar on Saturday and the band of mates playing and singing in The Dame Tavern last night made me long to pick up my guitar again. I was enjoying the music that I forgot to get a snap of myself but the photo above is from the Long Room in Trinity College. Anyway, I’ve decided that getting better at guitar can be another way that I try to conquer the MG – if I ever get past the beginner level, it’ll be another thing I can be grateful for.