And they sing songs they learned from their Irish-speaking ancestors. Many of them were locally composed as well and sharply reflect the good times and the bad times down the centuries.
One remarkable ballad, for example, comes from the troubled times surrounding the 1798 Rising and wryly is entitled "The Cow That Ate the Piper.”
Sung by a humorous Jimmy Devlin, the first verse catches the flavor of the time that was in it, the enduring resilience of the race celebrating the fleadh on the streets outside:
"In the year 92 when all troubles was great,
It was treacon to be a Milesian,
O, I'll never forget that big whiskered set,
In history they call them the Hessians,
Well in these quare times of murder and crime,
And trouble that never was rifer,
On the hills of Achadh Bidh not very far from me,
Lived a one Danny Burns, a piper."
The song goes on to relate how the piper, wanding around in leaky shoes, found a Hessian that had been hung by the insurgents and who was wearing a mighty pair of leather boots. When he went to pull them off the legs came away too. The Hessian mercenary had obviously been hanging in the tree for long enough for that to happen.
Danny runs away with both boots and legs attached and, having been given permission by a neighbor, slept in a cow cabin for the rest of the night. In the morning he donned his new boots, left the poor legs behind and went about his piping business.
The farmer's son, sent out to waken him, went running back to his father shouting, "The cow ate the piper!"
And the witty ballad ends with all dancing in the inn around a well-shod Danny Burns the piper. Surely the very spirit of the merriment outside.
Poignantly, all the balladeers that Peter Smith and his friends recorded in their homes in the eighties and nineties are now deceased. But, thanks to this unique project, as I said at the launching, they will now never be truly dead and gone from us.
They will be heard forever, their voices mellowed by their years, their ballads recreating the ancient history of the Sperrins. I warmly commend this special package to all, but especially to those with good red Sperrin blood in them.
The contact for more information is email@example.com. I am not operating on a commission basis, but truly this package is worth laying hands and ears on.
Neither am I on a commission basis in relation to the Lakeland House guest house in Belturbet a few miles outside Cavan in which Peter Smith found me a room despite the shortage of accommodation because of the fleadh hordes.
But let's face it and agree that it is far from hotels that almost all of us were raised. But maybe we lost the run of ourselves here (and over there?) during the boom years.
Lakeland House is operated by the wholeheartedly welcoming Maureen and Iggy Fitzpatrick and son Hugh. I join a family for the night in a way you can never do in an hotel. Better still, they have a pub and splendid restaurant called the Harbour Bar in the center of the village.
I am under the same guest house roof as the lively dancers from the Miriam McCarthy Dancing School who are celebrating winning no less than 16 medals at the fleadh! Their mood is merry.
Maureen ferries me in to the captain's table for an excellent and reasonably priced dinner. I can take a few drinks because she is also ferrying me home.
There is a mighty band playing at the end of the bar, even with a saxophone for the genuine jazzy showband sound. People are dancing, drinking, singing.
In a way that does not really happen in the different atmosphere of hotels, I meet the members of the band-John McIntyre and Brassroots -- John and Declan and Pat -- and the mighty Maureen even arranges later that I can have the best jive I've had in 20 years with her friend Philomena, a lady as light on her feet as a fairy.
And I have great chats and a singsong with new friends like Walter and Eileen and David. And the band plays on.
Recession? What recession?
Maureen and Iggy ferry me home happy, Jimmy gives me my breakfast next (late) morning, and Iggy ferries me back to Belturbet again. I depart reluctantly and, for what it is worth -- and it is worth a lot as a travel tip -- tell ye that you can reach these great people at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Again I'm not on commission, just passing on the facts of a memorable Cavan day and night.
Maybe this summer is gone but its spirit surely is not.