‘Ar-Lan-Y- Môr’ ‘On the Sea Shore’ by Catrin O’Neill

I really like this Welsh folk song by Catrin O’Neill (of Irish extraction):

…[w]ho grew up by the sea in Southern Snowdonia, surrounded by a wealth of traditional Welsh music and culture. Her Grandmother or Nain, was one of the first to introduce her to the magic of folk songs, often sung in the kitchen beside the warm Aga with a cup of tea in hand…

As I was viewing here my first thought was that the sandy beach reminded me so much of Curracloe, my most favourite beach in Co Wexford – incidentally, which was used in the filming of Saving Private Ryan. (I was there one day during that time in 1998. It was a good experience, though not all people were happy with the idea for environmental reasons. It was all clouded over.) I then came across the following:

Music video for ‘Ar-Lan-Y-Mor’ from Catrin O’Neill’s critically acclaimed album Nain’s Kitchen on IMMG Sparkling Wine Records. Filmed in Wales and Ireland. Produced and directed by John Perkins.

My first introduction to the Welsh language (and guitar for that matter) was, when I resided at St. Louise’s hostel for girls in Medway St. London, SWI, during the early seventies. There was a Welsh girl called Jane Roberts in our folk group, who spoke and sang in Welsh. She taught us lots of Welsh traditional songs. I also shared with the group Gaelic (As Gaeilge) songs. Our group was also very capable of singing in Latin, French, German, Spanish, Italian and of course, English. I soaked up the cosmopolitan atmosphere. We even sung a traditional Jewish song.

There are sounds in Welsh that the Latin alphabet doesn’t have, so they use things called digraphs – like ll (the hardest one for English speakers) or ch (easier).

When you can say this you have passed the first hurdle:

Lllanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychw­yrndrobwllllantysiogogogoch

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