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All-Star Night (Part 3):
Richard “Shag” Shaughnessy

January 7th, 2015

Shag Maycraic

(/kræk/ krak) — n

news, gossip, fun, entertainment, and enjoyable conversation, particularly prominent in Ireland.


Of all the 21st-century scops who frequent the storytelling nights at Riley’s Pour House, perhaps the the greatest practitioner of craic is Richard “Shag” Shaughnessy.

Delivered in a folksy, conversational style, Shag’s stories brim with local flavor and history . . . and they always end with a terrific payoff.

Owen Trophy (225x340)The story he shared at last month’s All-Star Night is a fine example of the kind of storytelling he brings to Riley’s, so today we continue our highlights from 2014 with a slice of humor from Richard “Shag” Shaughnessy.

Also, if you missed them, be sure to check out the All-Star Story Night podcasts featuring prize-winners Owen Kilbane (at right) and Stephanie Wytovich.

Our next Story Night will be on January 27, when the theme will be Resolutions. It should be a craicing good time.

Image Credits:
– Shag at Storytelling Night, May 2014 – Photo by Karen Yun-Lutz.
– Owen Kilbane with All-Star Trophy, December 2014 – Photo by The 21st-Century Scop.
– Shag at All-Star Storytelling Night, December 2014 – Photo by The 21st-Century Scop.

All-Star Night:
When Scops Come Out to Shine

December 31st, 2014

Story Night Trophy  compressedscop

(skop)  — n

(in Anglo-Saxon England) a bard or minstrel

In addition to being an entertainer who composed and performed his own works, the scop served as a kind of historian and preserver of the oral tradition […].

 — Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008.

If Riley’s Pour House is steph compressedcontinuing the tradition of the Anglo-Saxon meed-hall by providing a public space to celebrate the art of story, then the storytellers who show up every month to share their tales are indeed following in the footsteps of the ancient scops.

Last night, some of the top scops of 2014 returned to Riley’s for a special All-Star event that culminated with the awarding of the first-ever Riley’s Storytelling Trophy, presented by acclimation to the top storyteller of the year.

It was a close decision, so tight that in the end the prize went to two storytellers: Owen Kilbane and Stephanie Wytovich.

owen with pantiesIn the coming days, I’d like to post of few highlights from last night’s event, starting today with a podcast of Owen Kilbane’s story about growing up in Cleveland and his discovery that being a musician comes with certain rewards.

As a special note, for those of you who missed the live performance, part way through the podcast Owen makes reference to “these.” He says, “It was these actually. These are the actual ones.” To see what he is referring to, please see the photo to the left.


Image Credits:
– Jim Riley awards the Riley’s Trophy to Owen Kilbane and Stephanie Wytovich. 
– Stephanie Wytovich presents her award-winning story.
– Owen Kilbane holds up a pair of “these.”
– Owen plays his accordion, appropriately draped with one of his other trophies.
All photos copyright © 2014 by The 21st-Century Scop.