Review by Des Kenny of Kenny's Book Shop (Galway).
For those whose bent is traditional Irish music, look no further than
the charming Wallup by malachy Bodhrán (Kearns) from Roundstone. This slim volume is a
wonderful stream of consciousness from a man totally bound up in the bodhrán business.
His style is most definitely conversational but equally endearing for those with a
fascination with the instrument. This means from Christy Moore down.
If the fireside is to remain a place for conversation then Malachy
Bodhrán and his book "Wallup" are good company there. This book is not written,
it is spoken and Malachy makes sure we know that from the beginning. Here is a man at his
trade, which is making bodhráns and talking us through it. The conversations generally
last about 30 minutes but they are filled with fact and fancy. This is a nugget for the
lover of traditional music.
Here is a book your will certainly enjoy. It will open in your heart a
place for bodhrán making. Where ever you play the bodhrán this book will bring you home.
Brim full of stories, chat and humour and the lore of bodhráns
Written on the cover of "Wallup!" is "Malachy Bodhrán
chats about the human and lore of Bodhrán Making", and chats he certainly does.
Reading this book is not the same as reading any other in that there is a feeling , if you
will, that one is not reading but rather listening to the humerious yarns of a good
storyteller. In the tradititional seanachaí style Malachy entices, the reader into a
mystical world as he recounts what he believes is the former life of the materials he used
in making his world famous bodhráns. Entwined in his tale of everyday life in the
workshop is the mastery & mystery of bodhrán making. One does not need to be a lover
of music to gain enjoyment from reading "Wallup!" But those who do have an
appreciation for music will understand what Malachy means in his various descriptions
about the bodhrán especially that of it being the backbone and heartbeat in traditional
Reviewed by Martina Flynn