Guitar in Irish Traditional Music

Section 1 of Accompanying Irish Music on Guitar reviews the emergence of the Guitar in Irish Traditional Music .
The first recordings of Irish music with chordal accompaniment (usually on piano) were the 78 rpm records made in America in the early 1900s by musicians such as Michael Coleman and James Morrison.  
The evolution of the guitar in Irish music was chequered however, and its introduction was perceived as a mixed blessing.  Performance by less than competent players led to the radical banning of the instrument by Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann- the organisation set up in 1951 to promote Irish music and dance!  Thankfully, the folk revival from the 1960s onwards was strong enough to wade through opposing conservative forces and the guitar enjoys a popular, secure position in  Irish music today. 
The first part of Section 1 concludes with a definition of accompaniment – essential for any tutor on the subject!
The next part of Section 1 outlines Frank’s favourite accompanists plus, more importantly, players who he personally thinks have made or are making a significant contribution to the broadening of accompaniment styles.  These include people such as Paul Brady, Micheal O’Domhnaill, Arty McGlynn and Steve Cooney.  A comprehensive discography for these and other players is also included in the Appendix to the book.
Section 1 concludes with three rules on accompanying tunes effectively: listen, listen and listen!
1. Listen to other accompanists
2. When playing, listen to the tune
3. Listen to your own playing
Useful tips are provided on what to do when listening to Irish music to increase your chances of hitting the right chord! Back