Seán Reid was born in Castlefin County Donegal in 1907 but spent
most of his life in Ennis, County Clare where he was assistant county engineer
responsible for water and sewage. Some of his earlier years were spent
near Dungannon in County Tyrone. He graduated a B.Sc. in civil engineering
from Queen’s University Belfast in 1931. Seán was leader of the
Tulla Céili Band from 1947 until the mid sixties. His interest in
traditional music is legendary as was his kindness, generosity and help
to many musicians, beginners and masters alike.
Seán played with many of the greatest traditional musicians at
one time or another, to name a few; Joe Cooley, Paddy Canny, P.J. Hayes,
Peter O’Loughlin, Bobby Casey, Martin Talty, Martin Rochford and Willie
Clancy. When Johnny Doran lay on his deathbed Seán organised a benefit
céili at Quilty Co. Clare for Johnny and his family. When he last
visited O’Mealy he found him in unfortunate circumstances and sent him
a few bags of coal. He ordered from Leo Rowsome the best set of pipes he
could make and these are now played by Liam O’Flynn. He was a friend of
the famous piper Brother Gildas and so had a direct link with the old timers
back to Fraher in the late 18th century.
Seán collected pipes around the countryside at a time when there
was little interest. Most of them he gave away and often for nothing, providing
he saw a keen interest or talent. A fine set made by Colgan he gave to
Jimmy O’Brien Moran. There was great sorrow among all who knew him when
he passed away untimely in 1978.
The Seán Reid Society.
This society was founded in 1998 as the result of the wishes of a small
number of Uilleann, Union or Irish pipers who have a serious and particular
interest in the history, music and technology of the Irish pipes. This
was originally envisaged as a sharing of information within a small group.
Eventually however, members expressed a desire to make this information
more widely available. The producing of an annual journal was agreed as
the best way to do this. Because there were few members and no funding,
CD ROM was the chosen means of achieving publication of the journal economically,
the publication costs of which are subsidised by membership dues (see below).
In future this format should also allow us to include illustrative or archival
audio and video recordings with the Journal.
To date one journal has been published. Volume 1 is most conveniently
accessed by PC users. Volume 2 is due for publication
at the beginning of April 2000 and will be in HTML format with articles
stored in PDF and MS-Word formats. It will therefore have the appearance
of a website and will be readable on the majority of computer types.
Membership and Contact Information.
Membership is open to all for an annual subscription of £15 sterling.
£20 punts, $25US or equivalent.
Applications for membership can be made by first contacting one of the
Europe; Ken McLeod firstname.lastname@example.org
The Americas; Mark Walstrom email@example.com
Asia Pacific; Craig Fischer firstname.lastname@example.org
Questions, suggestions, or comments regarding the contents of this web
site, please contact Bill Haneman; email@example.com
Authors please note that the notes to contributors are
under revision at this time. Please contact Ken McLeod or Bill Haneman
regarding technical details of multimedia content.
Volume 2 will feature drawings and measurements for a quite perfect Hugh
Robertson pastoral set, Edinburgh circa 1780 and a fine Timothy Kenna three-quarter
set in C, Dublin circa 1820. Articles on reamer making, Lord Rossmore,
more on O’Mealy, the master makers of the early 19th century and part two
of Pat Mitchell’s scholarly analysis of rhythm in Irish music will form
only part of the content. Twelve to fifteen articles are envisaged at this