Drums & Congas for St. Patrick’s Band

Cashelman John Devitt, pictured presenting  a pair of Conga drums to Gus McDonnell, St Patrick's Brass Band in the foyer of the old town hall last week.
An unusual little ceremony took place in the foyer of the old town hall on Monday, June 29th.

An unusual little ceremony took place in the foyer of the old town hall on Monday, June 29th.

Former professional dance band drummer, 85-year-John Devitt, presented the last piece of his extensive kit, a pair of conga or tumbadora drums to another former pro-drummer and two years his junior Gus McDonnell, band master emeritus St Patrick’s Brass Band. The pair grew up in the era of the big bands when names like (Ellington, Dorsey, Miller, Goodman) were the idols of the day and for drummers the legendary skin player Gene Krupa, both insistent that not alone were they drummers but also music readers. Gus played mostly with the Jimmy Wiley and Billy Kendrick Dance Bands, Mitchelstown and Fethard while John played with so many he could not remember half of them.

Full story in this week’s Tipperary Star.