The Big Irish Fair

The Merry Wives of Windsor

The Merry Wives of Windsor

It was time for the Big Irish Fair and Musicfest in Long Beach. So Martine and I headed down to El Dorado Park and sat down for a day of extreme heat and delightful Irish music.

We concentrated on the more traditional groups at the Royal Tara Stage, which included harpists, fiddlers, and the fun girl band who called themselves the Merry Wives of Windsor. Although their website concentrates on their Renaissance Faire appearances, here they were clad in mufti. Conveniently, the stage was in the comfortable shade of several large pines.

I was particularly taken with their fiddler, Darien DeVries with her dancing eyes (right, above). They played a mixture of Irish, English, and original music with toasts and jokes between numbers.

Also notable was the harp playing of Dennis Doyle, who sang several tunes in Gaelic. Included in his act was (strangely) the best re-telling of James Joyce’s story, “The Dead,” from his Dubliners.