Paddy Moloney, founding member of The Chieftains, has passed away.

Originally published at: Paddy Moloney, founding member of The Chieftains, has passed away. | Boing Boing


RIP, Paddy!

Also, RIP, Nanci!


I raise my glass to you Paddy Moloney!


Beautiful tribute. He will be greatly missed.


Fantastic tribute @SeamusBellamy

What a guy.


I’ve seen The Chieftans live twice. Both times Mr. Moloney came out and started speaking in Gaelic then apologized and switched to English. It always got a big laugh out of the crowd, but, really, no apologies were necessary. Mr. Moloney was funny, smart, and charming in any language.


Something for folks who may not be trad fans…

This version of Samradh Samradh was something I liked as a kid… but I didn’t know that it had words until later.


Should have stayed in Gaelic and let the English speakers figure it out…

Huddles over duolingo app… nice little ulchabhán!


So when I was kid, my parents helped found the Irish Arts Center on the west side of Manhattan. Around 1975 or so, when Irish music wasn’t played in Ireland, the Chieftains did a big open seisun with a Native American group (the kind of thing they later did on several albums.) The IAC had two ceili bands, and some of the players later became semi-famous in their own right in the Irish music scene (Brian Conway was my mother’s fiddle teacher).

Anyway, one of the musicians happened to remember that Gary Owen was General Custer’s battle song and said “whatever you do, don’t play Gary Owen”… however Paddy Reynolds (an accordion player famous in NYC at the time) was a little deaf and said “Gary Owen? That’s a great song” and launched into it… as people can do at a seisun. Everyone else was mortified (something I didn’t totally get when I was around 5, but I knew something was happening…) Everyone got past that though…


I was saddened to hear of Paddy’s passing on NPR this morning. I was on my morning walk and stopped in my tracks. Such a wonderful musician! I’ve seen The Chieftains in concert a few times - always a delight!

I didn’t know you were friends until I read this, @SeamusBellamy - I am sorry for your loss.

Paddy Moloney will be missed. Tonight, I will raise a toast to him and to Seamus.


Crap @Mindysan33 you beat me to it.
I’ll add this little gem to compliment your own, highlighting Paddy a bit more:


It will surprise many people in Ireland to learn they weren’t playing Irish music in 1975.


Oh… I might tune in now and again just to listen to the Gaeilge!

Listening now… I have no idea what’s going on… it’s some call in show… I love it.


Been listening off and on for weeks now. I find it fascinating and am completely unable to leverage my German, classical Latin, Spanish… it’s as excitingly difficult for me as Chinese, which I should know some of but I don’t, beyond numbers and a few phrases.

Back on topic, since everyone is posting their favorite songs by The Chieftains, I am deeply grateful for this documentary about them:

“We were the ones–The Chieftains–to take the music off the island.”

Rest in Power, Paddy Moloney.
How lucky we are to have had you here.
Thank you for coming.

You and your work reclaimed so much for yourself, for Ireland and her people, and for all of us music lovers spellbound by your gifts. Gifts all the more amazing for needing no translation to be loved and appreciated.


A wonderful tale of wonderful men and musicians. All healing to you, and to all who love Paddy.


I ripped a Chieftains CD in a public library outside of San Diego at the beginning of a drive to Alaska 20 years ago and I still have the MP3s.

I’ve also paid for plenty of music since then, too. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the good times, Paddy.

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