Joseph M. Reavy Death, Obituary – We learnt this week that Joseph M. Reavy had passed away at the age of 95, and it was with a heavy heart that we received the news. Joe Reavy was one of a total of six children that were born to Ed Reavy and his wife Delia Morley in the town of Knock. Joe was a talented musician who devoted a significant portion of his life to perpetuating the musical legacy and family reputation of his late father. In the 1960s, Joe Reavy and his brother Ed Junior began a project to transcribe and annotate the tunes that their father, Ed Reavy, had composed. The melodies were taken from a number of old homemade 78s that Ed had recorded with his buddy Tommy Caulfield, as well as from Ed’s own recollection.
This led to the creation of the first book, “Where the Shannon Rises,” which was published in 1971 and featured 78 compositions by Ed Reavy. This was followed by the publication of “The Collected Compositions of Ed Reavy,” which featured introductions written by Mick Moloney (who has since passed away) – This book had 127 of Ed’s tunes, and the fact that we have so many Reavy tunes now is a direct result of the dedication shown by Joe and Ed’s Junior. In 2016, Joe came to see us in Cavan with his daughter Maire, his granddaughters Keira and Sabrina, and his son-in-law Randell Jesup.
He was a gentleman who had a plethora of musical knowledge and wonderful memories from his boyhood, which he shared with pleasure and joy as he reminisced on the brilliance of his father, Ed Reavy, who was a musician. He also had a depth of musical knowledge. During the course of his stay, he gave each of us a copy of his own work, which was titled “Reavy’s Ireland” and consisted of poems written by Irish authors put to music that he had composed. At the 2019 Mid-Atlantic Region Hall of Fame Banquet in June 2019, Joe was presented with the Gradam Comaoine/Outstanding Contribution Award from Mid-Atlantic Comhaltas Ceoltóir Éireann. This award recognizes outstanding contributions to the organization.