Paddy Glackin & Jolyon Jackson – Hidden Ground (1980)

frontcover1This is a masterpiece of Irish Folk !

Paddy Glackin (born 5 August 1954) is an Irish fiddler and founding member of the Bothy Band. He is considered one of Ireland’s leading traditional fiddle players.

Paddy Glackin was born on 5 August 1954 in Clontarf, Dublin. His father Tom Glackin was a Dublin policeman and notable fiddle player who instilled in Paddy a deep interest and love of the music of his native county-Donegal, and taught him and his brothers Kevin and Seamus to play the instrument. As a result of his father’s influence, Paddy was playing fiddle in the Donegal style by the age of six. During his primary school years, he took classical violin lessons in Chatham Row in Dublin, which gave him an important technical grounding in music and helped develop his formidable technique. His playing style, however, was developed more informally at home, where his father organized regular Wednesday afternoon music sessions with many musicians, including Seamus Carroll, Larry Redigan and Frank O’Higgins. Seamus Carroll was particularly encouraging and helpful, teaching Paddy the techniques of Sligo-style fiddling.

While on a trip to Donegal with his father, music collector Breandan Breathnach, and Clare fiddle player John Kelly, Paddy encountered the music of the legendary travelling fiddler John Doherty, who would have a profound influence on the young musician.[2] Glackin frequently cites Doherty as his main influence. Paddy’s musical influences, however, are not limited to Donegal; he also cites fiddlers such as John Kelly, Tommy Potts and Padraig O’Keeffe as important in shaping his overall approach. Through the influence of his father and these talented fiddlers, Paddy began to master a variety of Irish styles and amass a significant repertoire. In 1973, the nineteen-year-old Paddy became fiddle champion at the All-Ireland Fleadh Cheoil.

paddy-glackin01During his college years in Dublin, the city’s vibrant traditional music scene offered Glackin opportunities to meet fellow players his own age and perform a wide variety of venues. He became friends accordionist Tony MacMahon, flautist Matt Molloy, uilleann piper Paddy Keenan, brother and sister Mícheál Ó Domhnaill and Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill, and Dónal Lunny—all of whom would go on to prominent careers in Irish traditional music. Together they formed the group Seachtar, later renamed The Bothy Band, which would become one of the leading traditional bands in Ireland. The Bothy Band played a vital role in energising the Irish traditional music scene in the 1970s. After playing with the Bothy Band for eighteen months, Glackin decided to leave the popular group due to the demands of recording and touring:

“It just wasn’t for me and I certainly never wanted to do the album, tour, album, tour thing. I can see the need for doing it, but I always found it a little false. When I go out to play, it’s on my own terms. I look forward to it and I really enjoy doing it.”

Glackin took a job as an archivist and as Traditional Music Officer for the Irish Arts Council. He later transitioned into the broadcasting business, taking a position with RTÉ radio as a sports producer, presenter, and eventually editor. While maintaining his profession in RTÉ, Paddy continued to perform and record Irish music. In 1977, he recorded the first of several solo albums for the Gael Linn label. Simply titled Glackin, the album features several tracks recorded with his father Tom and his brothers Kevin and Séamus; it is still considered a classic in the genre. His brothers would later release an acclaimed duet recording titled Northern Lights. Glackin has since released numerous recordings, including seminal ones such as Doublin (1978) with the piper Paddy Keenan and In Full Spate (1991) with Dónal Lunny. More recently, Glackin recorded the duet album Seidean Si (1995) with piper Robbie Hannon, and Reprise (2001) with his former Bothy Band colleague, the late Mícheál Ó Domhnaill.


Although Glackin is quite outspoken in his preference for a pure soloist approach to the tradition, he has been involved in a number of experimental recordings, including Roaratorio by the American avant-garde composer John Cage and Hidden Ground, a recording from 1980 made with the late multi-instrumentalist Jolyon Jackson which is notable for its use of synthesizers alongside Glackin’s pure traditional fiddle playing. This recording anticipated the trend for mixing traditional Irish music with synthesizers.

Glackin continues to perform, and he teaches annually at the Willie Clancy Summer School in Clare. (by wikipedia)

Jolyon Jackson (3 September 1948 – 18 December 1985) was an Irish musician and composer.

Jackson was born in Malaya where his father, Patrick Jackson, was Deputy Commissioner of the police and would receive the CBE. His father was from County Limerick, of a Cork family; his mother was the singer Charmian Jenkinson. They lived at Poul-na-murrish, Annamoe, County Wicklow.

jolyon-jackson01He was educated in Salisbury Cathedral School and Bradfield College, Reading. He studied at Trinity College, Dublin in the late 1960s, where he graduated in Arts and Music. He integrated himself into the musical life of Dublin, first with the group ‘Jazz Therapy’, and later with ‘Supply, Demand and Curve.’ He played cello, recorder and keyboards–including organ, piano and synthesizer.

He married Teresa Le Jeune from Delgany, County Wicklow and they had a son, Linus.

Jolyon Jackson died in London of Hodgkin’s disease on 18 December 1985.

The band ‘Supply, Demand & Curve’ was formed in 1970 and initially consisted of Jackson, Brian Masterson—who had played with Jackson in ‘Jazz Therapy’ during 1968-69—and Paddy Finney. They had a weekly gig at the Project Arts Centre and later played mainly in folk clubs in Dublin and beyond.

With a line-up of Jackson, Masterson, Finney and Roger Doyle—who had also been in ‘Jazz Therapy’—they undertook a tour of Canada in 1973. Rosemarie Taylor (keyboards and vocals) and other musicians joined them off and on over the years.

They released their eponymous album in 1976 on the Mulligan label (LUN 009). It contained eleven tracks, ten of which were composed by Jackson. It had taken several years of snatched studio time to complete, and included contributions from some musicians who were no longer in the band by the time the LP was released.

Other recordings on which Jackson featured include Camouflage by Sonny Condell, and Taylormaid by Rosemarie Taylor—both released on Mulligan in 1977. He subsequently appeared as a guest musician on albums by The Chieftains, Midnight Well, Christy Moore, Terry and Gay Woods, and also reunited with Doyle who, by then, had created the music-theatre company Operating Theatre with Irish actress Olwen Fouéré.

Jackson was an early adopter of home-recording, buying an eight-track recorder and setting up a studio at his home in Dún Laoghaire, where he recorded the seminal album Hidden Ground (Tara 1980) with fiddle player Paddy Glackin, on which he arranged the music and also played all the instruments surrounding the fiddle.

Compositions for television include the RTÉ series Hands, Visions of Transport and To the Waters and the Wild.

Jackson also involved himself in music for the theatre, most notably in the music for the W. B. Yeats trilogy based on the Saga of Cú Chulainn, performed in the Noh style and directed by Hideo Kanze at the Abbey Theatre. Later on, he also composed music to accompany the exercises of the Gurdjieff movements. (by wikpedia)


And together they produced this brilliant album: They blended traditional Irish with modern arrangements and instrumentation. Exciting, innovative, radical in its time and still sounding fresh.

The good thing about this album is that although the accompaniment includes evertyhing but the kitchen sink:synthesizers, piano, electric and bass guitars, cello, recorder and something resembling beer bottles being played under water, the tunes are played by Paddy Glackin on fiddle in a purely traditional manner without any jazzing up at all. It sounds weird to begin with but it grows on you with every listening. (by bmilesnagopaleen)


Paddy Glackin (fiddle)
Jolyon Jackson (cello, bouzouki, mandola, mandolin, guitar, bass, harmonica, bodhrán, keyboards, synthesizer, tambourine, whistle, recorder)
Paul McAteer (drums, percussion on 11.)
Fran Breen (drums on 01., bottles on 08.)
Brian Masterson (bass on 01.)


01. The Long Note 3.05
02. The Jug Of Punch / Eddie Kelly’s Reel 3.18
03. Rodney’s Glory / The Bank Of Ireland 4.35
04. The Japanese Hornpipes 3.11
05. Give Me A Drink Of Water / My Mind Would Never Be Easy / The Rakes Of West Meath 3.37
06. The Green Fields Of America 3.06
07. Reevy’s Reels / Dowd’s Favourite 3.30
08. The Drunken Sailor 4.41
09. The Butterfly 3.15
10. Port Na Bpucai 4.12
11. Top It Off / Promenade / The Congress Reel 4.11

All tracks: Traditionals