Shillelagh Poem for Saint Patrick’s Day

Patrick Jones’ “My Blackthorn Stick” In honour of Saint Patrick’s Day, I’m delighted to have secured permission to share a previously unpublished poem titled “My Blackthorn Stick” by Patrick Jones (c. 1875–1956) of County Cork, Ireland. The text depicts the experience of finding a shillelagh-worthy blackthorn shank, the labour of transforming it into a proper … Continue reading Shillelagh Poem for Saint Patrick’s Day

Anti-recruitment Shillelagh in “Arthur McBride”

Irishmen Stick-fighting for Freedom on Christmas Morning. Some versions of the Irish ballad "Arthur McBride" take place on December 25th, so today being Christmas makes it an apt time to share a bit of information about this traditional song. Of key interest here is the use of a shillelagh by two Irishmen to defend themselves … Continue reading Anti-recruitment Shillelagh in “Arthur McBride”

Shillelagh Studies on the “Mind Your Movement” Podcast

Podcast: Sound and Music of the Shillelagh. I'm delighted to have been a guest on Freemen Fitness's "Mind Your Movement" podcast. We covered my concept of martial sound, my research on the musical culture of 19th-century faction fights in Ireland, and the state of Irish stick-fighting today.  The host of the podcast, Nathan Featherstone, is … Continue reading Shillelagh Studies on the “Mind Your Movement” Podcast