Barney McKenna, ‘Banjo Barney from Donnycarney’, was one of the founder members of the Dubliners. But he was also famous for another reason: he was capable of bringing any conversation to a sudden stop by uttering something so completely unexpected as to reduce everyone present to bemused silence. An Obstacle Confusion is a collection of stories about Barney and his ‘Barneyisms’. It was compiled by the late Jim McCann, a former member of the Dubliners, and illustrated by Wendy Shea, a long-time friend of Barney. These wonderful flights of fancy are must-reads for Dubliners fans, young and old. * The Dubliners were travelling through a wine-growing region in southern Germany and had stopped at a scenic restaurant with a wonderful view over the vine-covered hills and valleys. They stood outside, gazing at the breathtaking, sun-dappled panorama, an occasional medieval castle peeking through the mist-shrouded trees, and basked in the beauty of the idyllic scene. Barney eventually broke the reverential silence. “Jaysus,” he said, “there’s a fair few hangovers growin’ up there.”



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