TR Dallas rambles
I was recently up in Derby Irish Centre to watch TR Dallas
perform and came away the lucky recipient of TR’s latest
album Rambling Boy.
Derby Irish Centre is one of the many Irish Centres in England
working hard to keep an Irish identity alive in their area,
not only with regular music from local Irish acts, but also
by having special evenings starring the cream of Ireland’s
country and Irish artists as well as top folk band The
Wolfetones who will soon be making their second appearance
Centres such as Derby Irish Centre need as much publicity as
possible, both from Irish papers and Irish radio shows, to
entice local people and visitors to support their endeavours
to keep the very best of country and Irish music alive and
Derby Irish Centre have rewarded their members and guests with
shows from Eamon McCann, Jimmy Buckley, Shawn Cuddy,
Collette and Jive Beat Country, Conor McKay and Ursula over
the past three years, and are now becoming firmly
established as a top Irish club in the Midlands of England
for both established and up-and-coming acts.
It was TR’s first visit to Derby and the crowd loved this
gentle giant from Moate in Co. Westmeath. Ably assisted by
Dessie Hynes, TR put on a show that he has become famous
throughout Ireland and further afield. TR, real name Tom
Allen, is the brother of Tony Allen of Foster and Allen
renown, and he shot to fame with his Stetson and challenging
single Who Shot JR? Tom still sports the Stetson and his
audiences still crave for his hit single.
Rambling Boy has 14 excellent tracks, opening with the title
track, which is one of my favourites from the pen of the
unique American folk legend Tom Paxton. Two Irish men who
have lived in the Midlands of England have their
compositions aired, with Jim Corbett’s Guinness Song
creating a lively sing-along feeling, and Denis Barron’s
beautiful ballad Limerick Vales.
Another earlier hit of Tom’s is 21 Acres Of Land, which echoes
the often repeated complaint from small farmers in Ireland
that it is impossible to keep a family on a handful of acres
and that emigration is the only answer.
Why Can’t We? is a thought-provoking track challenging us to
explain why nature and small children can grow up together
but adults find it so hard to cross cultural, religious and
The Lassies from Belmullet and the Boys from Castlebar will
appeal to not only the Mayo contingent but also to anyone
who loves an old fashioned quickstep. John Shorthall is a
tribute in the first instance to a local musician who could
always be guaranteed to turn up for socials and community
events without demanding a fee, but it should indeed be
attributed to so many local musicians who keep their genre
of music alive because they understand the importance of
music in today’s fast-growing villages and towns.
Waxing Labels laments the fact that ,while health warnings are
regularly broadcast about the perils of overindulgence in
drink, tobacco and drugs, little is said to remind us that
songs can bring tears to your eyes, a lump in your throat, a
wrenching in your guts, and a painful tug at the old heart
TR has a voice to enthral all of his listeners and his
arrangement of Rambling Boy has produced an album that has
to be included in your music collection.
TR Dallas, Rambling Boy, 00353 648 1368.