at the summit of Uisneach, County Westmeath, Ireland

llamh Conchobar Clarsair (pronounced "Olov Conor Clarsheer" - the name means "Master Conor the harper") is an Irish musician and artist. He is from Baile an Doire Crannog in Clonlonan in Mide in the center of Eire. In the time of Conchobar's persona - 1150 AD, according to the monks, Baile an Doire means "the hold of the oaks" (modernly spelled Ballinderry). It is right off the "Eiscir Riada" - "the riding ridge", which is the main east-west track between Dublin and Galway. Nearby are the monastic community of Clonmacnoise, where the great bridge across the River Shannon is; and the Hill of Uisneach, where the twin Beltaine fires were lit every year. In the 1200's, the Anglo-Norman invaders would build a "motte and bailey" castle, after which the adjacent town of Moate (2 miles from Baile an Doire) is named.

onchobar is a member of both the Order of the Laurel and the Order of the Pelican. His current projects are to build an Irish "round house" as a tent, and to make a replica of the Ballinderry Harp. He composes many of the harp pieces he plays, and also plays many period pieces. Here's Conchobar's Laurel ceremony, "SCA resumé" and some recent projects.

oth Ollamh Conchobar and his lady, Banbharún Líadan inghean uí Séaghdha are dedicated to the preservation of the Old Ways of their Irish ancestors. They have been members of the SCA for 24 years. Their interests include beading , brewing, costuming, music, jewelry making, leatherworking, weaving, glass beadmaking, woodworking and various other Arts and Crafts. They live in the Barony of Three Mountains in An Tir, where the weather is remarkably like that of their native Ireland, and the name of the kingdom is familiar, since it means "The Land" in Irish. They are members of the royal house of Ulfredsheim, who are some of the greatest folks in the Knowne World, besides being a total blast to camp with.




Per fess enarched Sable and Verte,
two flames and a harp Or

This represents the Hill of Uisneach with the Beltaine fires
and of course, the clairseach, the ancient Irish harp

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Bob Woods has been a computer artist for over 20 years, has had several pieces of art in national magazines and many galleries, and is a commercial web designer. He is the webmaster here at currentmiddleages.org, and has a background in publishing, photography and woodworking. He and his wife, Sam Murphy, have travelled to Ireland and England for vacation (otherwise known as persona research). His ancestors are from County Westmeath in Ireland, where Ballinderry Crannog and the Hill of Uisneach are located, and her father was born in Carrick-on-Suir, Ireland.
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Mon Apr 05, 2004

In the Studio

I've been recording songs for a benefit CD for Duke Tjorkill that Emryn is putting together. Last week I recorded "Bantiarna", one of my original tunes. Today I was over at his studio recording "Asa's Dream", the tune that His Majesty Skapti commissioned for Her Majesty Asa. I also recorded bodhran on one of Qada'an's tunes. She's the voice herald for Stromgard, and we hit it off immediately.

Mon Feb 16, 2004

Estrella War

We spent the last few days in Atenveldt at Estrella War XX. Here's an account of what happened there. We like to go down to Arizona in the winter if the weather's good down there, it beats the cold and rain of Oregon, even if just for a week. It was warm, in the 70s and low 80s but it was cold at night, below freezing.

It was 5 days of fun and warmth, dust and cold, lotsa walking, partying and harp playing. More...

Wed Jan 28, 2004

Ursalmas

We went up to Ursalmas last weekend for Olin's knighting. Left early on Saturday morning just before 6. It was uneventful, until we got off I-5 just after Northgate mall. It started hailing, then snowing. By the time we crossed I-405, it was snowing hard. Halfway to Monroe, there was about 3 inches of snow on the ground, and we saw someone climbing out from the window of their car, upside down in the ditch. Luckily there was a state police car which had just pulled up. We made it into Monroe without further mishap. More...

Tue Jan 13, 2004

Twelth Night

A busy weekend, with many happenings. We drove up from Portland through the remnants of the snow and ice of our recent storms. Beware the "mogul fields" of I-5 at rush hour! They suck! Finally arrived on site about 7:30 pm, after checking into our beach house and changing before heading to the hotel for Asa's vigil.

We all piled into the hotel room of Their Highnesses Skapti and Asa, carrying benches and sheepskins and food goodies. Jarl Ulfred brought in the bench he made for Asa, based on the headboard of the Oseberg ship-burial bed. Very impressive bench, all carved and painted, beautiful work. More...

Tue Dec 30, 2003

Getting Ready for 12th Night

Writing ceremonies, printing out inventory lists and heraldry, getting things ready for taking an apprentice, practicing harp, rounding up stuff for a vigil. Liadan's made an amazing number of necklaces for awards at court.

What's going on? More...

Tue Dec 16, 2003

Gerhard

A good friend has passed on today.

Gerhard Kendal, Baron of Lion's Gate for 26 years. Knight, Laurel, former Pelican, Lion of An Tir, and so much more...

I first met him about 15 years ago, when up in Lion's Gate for May Crown. Many times over the years, I've had the chance to talk with him and always left with the opinion that he and Amanda were very close to our ideal in the Society. They were the people we chose to emulate. I always was proud to call him friend.

In the last couple years, as the cancer ate away at his body and health, he never lost his will to live, to serve, to learn and teach. He remained active right up until the end. Always his eyes glittered with the anticipation of his next adventure, even death itself.

He lived his life with grace, bravery, dignity, and above all else, joy in everything he did. He will be fondly remembered long after many of our Kings have been forgotten, his influence was so great. He gave so much to enrich our Kingdom, and we will be the poorer for his passing...

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