You are the Flower of Ireland , out on the drifted wave , you are the Blood of Éireann, spilled in an empty cave…… in homeland surround, bog and lichen, heather and stone, river water, carry us home, home .
Described by others as a genius, a prophet, and a poet among other great things, Cork singer-songwriter Ger Wolfe possesses a rare ability to capture the hearts and minds of his listeners and carry them away in an ethereal haze.
Ger Wolfe is a quiet, unassuming and humble Cork man. He lives an ordinary life, by day he teaches singing and tin whistle in local schools, he potters about in his garden, grows his own vegetables, loves nature and wears an array of interesting woolly jumpers.
By night Ger is a musician whose music and lyrics are the very embodiment of the Irish spirit and easily evoke the essence of the Irish character.
This documentary, "Gentle Genius, Forgotten Poet" by Linda Geraghty attempts to paint a picture of an extremely talented and philosophical man whose lyrics and songs are powerful pieces of poetry in their own right, a man who sees the world in all it’s colour and glory and manages to carry listeners away with his music.
Possibly best known for his ‘folk classic’, The Curra Road, or indeed for his mention in John Spillane’s Magic Nights in the Lobby Bar, Ger has yet to receive the commerical success and recognition that he most certainly deserves.
The man himself is an unlikely star- quiet, shy, and very humble, not entirely comfortable with being in the spotlight but somehow driven to share his musical poetry with others. Nonetheless, this unlikely hero commands unyielding attention, emotion and support from an audience and he is known and highly respected by the most successful musicians in the country.
Ger Wolfe captures the Irish experience in his songs and gently reminds us of the joys of the rural landscape and the Irish condition. The pleasure of strolling by a river, the beauty of birdsong, the pain of loss, war or emigration, all the basic joys, hurt and wonder of life are touched on in a deep and meaninful, often simple, and always powerful way in Ger’s music.
Ger Wolfe is a man who’s genuine passion for nature and the simple things in life has captured the hearts of those who’ve encountered him.
Featuring Christy Moore, John Spillane, John Creedon and of course, Ger Wolfe, this documentary will take the listener on a journey into the mind and heart of this forgotten poet, to discover the magic and philosophy generated through his music, to sample a small part of his everyday world and find out why he is so beloved by those who know him.
Produced by Linda Geraghty (Little Oak Productions)
First Broadcast on 3rd July 2010.
Background on Ger Wolfe’s Music:
Cork-born singer-songwriter Ger Wolfe released ‘No Bird Sang’, his fifth collection of original songs in September 2009 on the Raggedy Records label, distributed in Ireland by Claddagh Records.
Previous albums include “Word and Rhyme” (1998), “Ragged Ground” (2000), “Heaven Paints her Holy Mantle Blue” (2002) and “The Velvet Earth” (2006). He tours as both a solo artist and with his band ‘The New Skylarks’. His songs are widely admired and have been covered by the likes of Karan Casey, Danú, North Cregg and Sharon Shannon. His much loved ode to childhood ‘The Curra Road’ has been hailed as a ‘folk classic’.
His latest album, No Bird Sang, was recorded and produced by the well known composer and musician Peadar O' Riada at his studio in Cúil Aodh in Co. Cork. It is a collection of heart-born songs including the title track ‘No Bird Sang’, (inspired by a discussion about the beginning of the world with a ten year old), and the twin songs-‘A song from earth’, (written as a birthday present for an astronaut) and ‘When the stars shine’ (questioning the ethics of space exploration).
For more information, see www.gerwolfe.com
An Irish radio documentary from RTÉ Radio 1, Ireland - Documentary on One - the home of Irish radio documentaries.