Saturday, 3 September 2011

Fats Domino at the Crystal Ballroom - a guest of the nation?

In my parents' time Ireland was monochrome. Forty shades, perhaps - but monochrome.

 It never really occurred to me - until after they were long dead -  how even more awful the place was back then, when I read an MIR called "Stealing Sunlight" by Angeline Kearns Blain some years ago.   If you think the country is bad now, just try to imagine how grim it was in the forties and fifties - and even the sixties - in orthodox Dev Ireland. 

It must have been a big thing when The Beatles vistited the Adelphi Ciniema in Dublin back in 1963 to play "She Loves You" and a few other ditties only to be mistaken, by some, for upstarts ripping off The Royal Showband.   But being "with it" in Ireland was not easy at the time.

I was just looking at YouTube earlier and came across Fats Domino.  My old dear (natural forces rest her) was well hip back then and was a big - real time - fan.  As a young wan she used to frequent one of Dublin's two relative hotspots... a place called "The Crystal" off Grafton Street.

Not too far from Kildare Street and the Dail.

But that was another world completely.

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Anonymous said...

yes indeed MR GM Iam pleased to report that FATS is still alive and living in his hometown of NUUOOORLINS , he was missing for days during katrina and was feared lost but to the delight of many he resurfaced hail and hearty, btw the dancing girls shuduuu look miiiity pritty in their flared dresses CHEERIO -BH

Men this side - wans on the other said...

Amazing - the suggestive power of a headline GM. I ended up reading that Frank O Connor story - Belcher and Hawkins as guests of the nation and loved the way they became more Irish than their irish captors themselves. Loved the irony too where they learned all the Irish dances but the Irish boys wouldn't dare to take lessons in any traditional english ones for fear of despoiling their purity - Great commentator , our Frank. Loved your post too - I used to find myself down at the Emerald Ballroom in the Wesht as a young greenhorn and withessed the antics of the likes of Brendan Bowyer, Dickie, and Joe (aka The Knob) and my favourite although not noted in Ballroom History tomes - Magic and the Magic band. Them were the days - JAYSUS SPARE US. PB

The Gombeen Man said...

@ BH. Wasn't aware of the Katrina business - just read about it now. Bit of an ordeal for an 83 year-old.

@ PB. Yes, I liked that Frank O'Connor story too, and that's what I was thinking of alright. "Well chums, what about it?".

anna said...

I like new mast head

The Gombeen Man said...

Thanks Anna. Just thought it might freshen it up a bit!

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