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Life Story of Reynardine…

For some unknown length of time, Garret, Aideen, Stephen, and Kevin had been 'getting together' to play a few tunes and sing a few songs. It is impossible now to understand why they decided to transform the wonderfully bohemian, no-strings lifestyle of the sessioneer into the convention-bound habits of a B-A-N-D, but they did do it, and that transformation happened sometime in the fourth quarter of the last year of the second millennium.

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    These are the original hand written lyrics to Aideen's first ever smash hit 'Eppie Morrie', a Scottish song she first heard as an exchange yow bucht hannler in the Bennerterylenes. The recording on the 'RED e.p.', brings the song together with a Swedish tune collected by Kevin from two ravishing back-packers down the back of a steam-powered omnibus somewhere in the Andes.
Neil's first attempts at designing the band's promotional material revolved around recycled paper. He has a long-standing obsession with waste paper, which he collects and grades according to tone, texture and staining. He uses them to create original portraits of Sam Phillips, which have been known to change hands.
I have a shop in NYC where one of you dropped off two CDs
for me to stock (well, 1 for me and 1 for the store).
I gotta tell you that I love this CD and would really love
to push it more if I had more copies of it.

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    SJ McArdle's handwritten lyrics for his contribution to the 'Red e.p.' A raucous live favourite which, like the character in the song, don't come around no more.
    The invitations to the e.p. launch were another opportunity for Neil to indulge his mania for paper-saving design. The invitations themselves measured 3.5cmx2cm, and every one of the 7000 envelopes had to be individually typeset and printed. As the envelopes were too small to accommodate a stamp, these had to be attached to standard sized envelopes, which accompanied each invitation. The entire process took 18 months, 17 and a-half months longer than the recording and design process, and Neil was subsequently admitted to a rest home for the graphically deranged

Folk music's freshest group, Reynardine has
just released its first CD which presents a unique
blend of vocals and music on a number of classic ballads.

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    The band, euphoric with their overnight success, snapped in jubilant form during the sound-check for a triumphant homecoming gig in Carberrys.
* You would not think to look at them that they were about to record a landmark folk record, the first ever to bring five songs to tape in under the twenty-minute mark. The long-planned "Folk Speed Record", which aims to capture thirty tunes in thirty minutes has unfortunately been shelved for the foreseeable future, as the technology just isn't available to cope with that class of song to time ratio.
*all five band members had been away for the weekend.

1. Have a really good idea for a song. Most good ideas for songs occur while walking, cycling (slight inclines only), shaving, and before 6p.m. weekdays, after 11.30p.m. weekends.
2. Make up a brilliant melody for your new song, something that no one ever thought of before.
3. Invent an unusual rhythm that will go with your great tune.
4. Write the lyrics, remembering that they have to be very good if they are going to keep up with all your other hard work.
5. Arrange these elements in a way that suits the song.
6. Record this new song as cheaply as possible.
7. Send it to the many people employed in all the aspects of the music business, who will be delighted to hear it and will immediately offer you and your band the use of their cars and homes.
8. Record the definitive version of your hit song.
9. Watch it tear up the charts, dancefloors, FM stations, car stereos and wind-up radios, from here to Ubangi.
10. There is no step ten, except it is return to step one.
The recording studio is the place for a lively exchange of views in a therapeutic setting far away from the hustle and bustle of every day life. Time seems to lose all significance as musicians discuss the likelihood of an Amon Duul ‡ Reunion Album or the type of talcum powder used for Rod de'Ath's Golas in the '74 Irish Tour. Slowly but surely as these relaxing weeks and months pass by, not only do all involved experience a resurgence in creative energies, but also produce the finest works of their careers to date. It will say so in the press release.
    Last ever picture of the band before their makeover. Out went the twenty-year-old hooded tops, and in came ten-year-old hooded tops.
    The 'Red E.P.' launch, Millmount Tower, Drogheda.
Gerry Cullen did the talking, Sheridan's supplied the food, the band supplied the drink, and the charm and buttered bread came from Bernie Morrissey and Brenda McAvinia.

What a refreshing change, last Monday night
at the Black Nun folk club, Ballycastle,
saw 'Reynardine' - an Irish group with
four fine singers, who dare to be different.

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Mother Redcap's Tavern,
Back Lane, Christchurch, Dublin 8.
Thursday 1st April 2004.

(see the full poster)

Reynardine write and perform score for
The Silver Tassie, September 2002,
Droichead Arts Centre.

Introduction (sample high | low)
Campfire Tassie (sample high | low)
Croucher (sample high | low)
Never Go Bald (sample high | low)
To The Guns (sample high | low)
The End (sample high | low)


When writing scores for dramatic works, the soundtrack to a wildlife film or even the theme tune for 'Garda Patrol', I have always found that the simplest ideas, given an original twist, usually work out very well. To date, I have written 697 scores and over 14,000 theme tunes in my long and illustrious career, and of that great many, my favourites have all been remarkably straightforward musical ideas, deliverd with the derring do for which I am renowned - the double bass played with a Lucozade bottle performing 'Stormy Monday' for Zuccotto's "Il Caramac", the violin melody for the award-winning "Fruitbats of the Serengeti" - a startling four note melody played by two musicians in separate cars travelling at not less than fifty miles an hour where one musician held and fretted the violin while the other bowed the instrument, with both performers leaning out the back seat windows of their respective vehicles. Don't be afraid of the simple tune or multiple lacerations, as my own rendition of "Do Nothing 'til You Hear From Me" on bandsaw and spokeshave was so spectacularly to lead.


This poster is one of our favourites, and mine in particular. It is from a lovely night we played in Omeath during Lent of 2002. We weren't getting many gigs, so we just decided to ask pubs to let us play.

play The Cobblestone

(see the full poster)
    While the band were holed up in the recording studio weeping tears of blood over what would become the never-released "Spartacus" triple album, Eighties superstar Fish from Marillion turned up, and he took on vocal duties for a day or two. Great fun was had by all as the band tore through "Flyin' Saucer Rock 'n' Roll", "Billericay Dickie", "Safety in Numbers"(a 'spontaneous' 58 minute jam) and of course, 12 versions of "Kayleigh". Although a bit stiffer than in his salad days, Fish is 100% Certified Rock and Roll Vertebrate - he never removed his shades, even in the shower, and had a Gauloises welded to his lower mandible. Mysteriously, the master tapes disappeared, and these tracks are now only available as top-quality must-have bootlegs, with titles like "Boyled Fish - Trawlin' the Lake" and "Steel Chowder".
This is the only photograph from that memorable time.