My name is Eoghan Wyndham. I represent the estates of Tom Fahy and Aestrid Byrne on the behalf of the Lionel William Eisley Cos., Galway, Co. Galway. Not only do I serve as chief legal counsel to the aforementioned business concern, but also, with varying degrees of success, as digital curator for its extant media catalogue.
My relationship with the Fahy, Byrne and Eisley families was not superficial. We were childhood friends. The Byrnes’, Thomas and Aestrid, were neighbors, in as much as intersecting copses may be constituted as such. And Byrnes and Fahys were bound in love and business from time immemorial. And both to Eisley patriarchs were bound from long before the troubles. Aestrid, smitten with him as a girl of fifteen, introduced me to Tom Fahy. This was 1987, and being a wary sort, attracted also to Aestrid Byrne in no uncertain terms, as was the lot of many men, did not take to the gentleman. Not at first. But Tom did not growl and was not of a jealous disposition, and it soon became a certainty that his bond with Aestrid was formidable, so a friendship was forged.
Wyndhams, fathers and sons, a generally poorer lot, but still of fine stock, also came under the influence of Eisleys, Byrnes and Fahys. This, perhaps, isn’t the place to talk at length on the order of names and heritages, but suffice it to say, fate would have it that the preservation of the last generation’s good works has fallen upon me. That last generation…
Their imaginations were sound, their graces fair, but their health was uniformly poor; they were at the mercy of ecstasies that laid them low, lower and finally overwhelmed them in relative youth. And though they were makers by spiritual mandate, they were pitifully bad at business, so music was made, played and forgotten. And so ignorant of the organizational principle, if there ever was one, that nothing in the way of rights and deeds and orders came down from that troupe, which had accreted to itself innumerable foreigners with claims to oldish families, like the Mulhollands. And soon so complicated became the estates, constituted of pianos and barns and orchards and stone towers and copper pots, that most of what was important was soon lost and what remains in the record a shadow. A mere shadow.
So in the thirteenth hour, the Eisley clan hanging on by a thread, a new appointee: Eoghan. And I will make this hardy admission: most of my best work is done from pubs. And from pubs now comes a salaried curator–a curator in retainer. But you’ll never know how good my friends were when they were good and truly good. But maybe I may in some pale way restore them in spirit, that you may hear them play as they did when it mattered most; when they played for family, when they played for friends.