Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day early with Danú

"GAINESVILLE, Fla. – One of the leading traditional Irish music ensembles of today will help kick-off St. Patrick’s Day a few days early when they perform March 13 at the Phillips Center for Performing Arts. Danú will perform traditional Irish music and songs.
Danú, which takes its name from the Irish goddess for fertility, has been performing since the early 1990s to standing-room-only crowds in their native Ireland. Hailing from County Waterford, the group employs a variety of instruments – including flute, tin whistle, fiddle, button accordion, and bouzouki – as well as haunting vocals. Their repertoire effortlessly blends traditional ancient Irish music with new, contemporary works.
Shortly after their inception, the band appeared at the Oireachtas Festival where they received the prestigious La Boulee Des Korrigan award, an award for the best new band of the festival. In addition, the band has been honored with numerous awards from the BBC and Irish Music Magazine. In January 2004, Danú was invited to perform at the launch of Ireland’s EU presidency ceremony and. The band was invited to perform as part of the Irish government’s trade delegation to India in 2005."

Irish music to fill Orpheum Theatre

"A little bit of Irish is coming to Galesburg just in time for St. Patrick’s Day.

The Orpheum Theatre kicks off its 2011 Red Carpet Series with a performance at 7:30 p.m. March 10 by Celtic Crossroads’ World Fusion Tour.

The group hails from Galway City, Ireland, where its members started performing on the streets of the city.

Kevin Crosby, a producer of the group, formed EMK productions with his brother, Eamon, and Michael McClintock in 2005 and began auditioning musicians from around the world to play traditional Irish music.

Celtic Crossroads is named for the days when the Irish were forbidden by their British rulers to play their music in public. So they’d gather after hours.

“Irish people, being the great lawbreakers they are, had this tradition of meeting at the crossroads,” Crosby said. “That’s when the big joy of the community spirit came out.”"

Cara Dillon – review

"Cara Dillon has long been marked for great things. Raised near Derry in a hotbed of traditional Irish music, she won the All-Ireland Singing Trophy aged just 14, before later being recruited to replace Kate Rusby in the ill-fated manufactured folk super-group Equation alongside the three brothers Seth, Sam and Sean Lakeman. The last decade saw Dillon embrace more commercial folk-pop crossover material until a family crisis led her to retreat and re-embrace the Irish music icons, such as Planxty and the Bothy Band, that originally inspired her.
Last year's comeback, a set of covers of traditional songs called The Hill of Thieves, was voted album of the year at the BBC Folk awards. The album's crowning achievement is to render these venerable airs and laments contemporary and relevant, and Dillon's live show reflects the record's sparse, stripped-down arrangements.

Backed by husband Sam Lakeman on guitar and piano and a tight circle of bodhran-players and flautists, she sings with an intimacy that suggests the late-night craic sessions where she cut her teeth. It works because her voice is a thing of wonder: a warm yet precise tool that locks into the expansive humanity at the heart of these ancient songs. On Johnny, Lovely Johnny and Jimmy Mó Mhíle Stór, she superbly evokes the hollow ache of unrequited love, while her gentle reworking of the old standard P Is for Paddy is captivating."

Monday, 7 March 2011

Celtic Music and Arts Festival

"America’s oldest city will boldly reassert its remarkable Spanish Celtic colonial roots and its strong Irish-Scottish heritage March 11 – 17 when St. Augustine celebrates its first Celtic Music and Arts Festival in the city’s historic district.
Presented by Romanza, in association with Meehan’s Irish Pub on Matanzas, and directed by internationally acclaimed guitarist and band leader Benny O’Carroll of County Kerry in Ireland.

The festival launches with a series of weekend concerts and a parade on March 12, followed by a week of traditional music performances hosted by Celtic Masters. The festival concludes with a celebration on St. Patrick’s Day in downtown St. Augustine.

“The festival is arguably the finest international collaboration of Celtic music and arts that the United States has ever seen,” said Albert Syeles, festival organizer. “Some of the greatest living musicians, artists, writers and poets from Ireland, the United States, and the Celtic region of Spain (birthplace of Pedro Menendez, St. Augustine’s founder) will converge in this wonderfully romantic city for a weeklong celebration to honor the great traditions of music, literature, dance and all things Celtic.”"

Get ready for an Irish jig

"Downtown's St. Patrick's Day Downtown Street Festival Saturday on the 600 block of Eighth St. won't be the same old song and dance.

While the festival has always been about song, thanks to traditional Irish music bands like Ireland's Call and Shannon Folk, this year the popular event is adding a little dance, too, courtesy of Paula Lyons' Defining Moments Dance Studio in Iowa Park.

Lyons said she has known Iron Horse Pub co-owner Danny Ahern for a few years and they've talked about adding Irish dance. 'We're going to do an Irish reel and an Irish jig,' said Lyons of her youth and adult dancers."

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Police chief's passion for Irish music sounds through the century

AMERICA: Born in Skibbereen in 1848, Francis O’Neill collected more than 3,500 traditional tunes

HOW DIGNIFIED Capt Francis O’Neill looks in the sepia portrait photograph, taken 110 years ago and recently reproduced in the Library of Congress’s American Folklife Center News .

The Chicago police chief’s visored cap is embroidered with the words “Gen’ Superintendent” wreathed in laurels. The stars around his collar echo the larger star pinned on his chest. Gold buttons shine on his double- breasted jacket.

The greying temples suggest wisdom and authority; O’Neill would have been 53 at the time, but there’s a far-away look in his eyes, the hint of an artist in the shaggy moustache.

O’Neill was by all accounts an exemplary police chief, whose passion for Irish music endeared him to the denizens of Chicago. Junior officers played music with him and joined in his quest for Irish tunes. The force’s hierarchy broke down when lowly sergeants burst into O’Neill’s office unannounced.

On one occasion, O’Neill was believed to be hot on the trail of a murder suspect. Engulfed by reporters on returning to headquarters, he announced he’d found a 93-year-old Irishwoman who “had a tune” he had never heard, The Little Red Hen.

Police chief's passion for Irish music sounds through the century - The Irish Times - Sat, Mar 05, 2011

Friday, 4 March 2011

Traditional music and folklore are inspiration for special city concert

"Dave Flynn is one of the few people in Irish music who is equally at home performing in a traditional session, a jazz session or in a classical concert.

The Dublin born, Spiddal based composer and musician who learned his traditional music at workshops during festivals around the country, trained as a classical guitarist under the renowned John Feeney and went on to do a degree in music in UCD.

Dave’s first instrument as a child was tin whistle. Then he had piano lessons but he didn’t take to that. When he started guitar, though, he felt had found his instrument.

As a teenager he dropped everything for heavy metal, but he points out that heavy metal draws influences from classical and folk music and it was through this that his interest in classical and trad began to develop.

He studied rock music at Ballyfermot College before continuing with a degree in music in the DIT Conservatory of Music and then a Masters Degree in composition at London’s Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He recently completed a PhD thesis, entitled a Traditional Irish Music: A Path to New Music, under Galway composer, Jane O’Leary. It’s not a bad achievement for a man who never intended studying music."

Tradition marches on with St. Patrick's Day parades across N.J.

"Hoboken's St. Patrick's Day Parade, which steps off at 1 p.m. Saturday at Washington and 14th streets, is the first of 25 St. Patrick's Day parades in New Jersey, covering all corners of the state and every weekend in March.

It's not surprising, especially since New Jersey boasts the first St. Patrick's Day celebration ever in the United States, and because the more than 1.3 million New Jerseyans of Irish descent make up more than 15 percent of the state's population.

'The tradition of having the St. Patrick's parade in Morris County goes to 1780, when George Washington, encamped at Jockey Hollow in Morristown, gave his troops a day off for St. Patrick's Day,' said William Quinn, grand marshal of the Morris County St. Patrick's Day Parade in Morristown."

Annual Celtic Festival to be held March 12 at Hjemkomst Center in Moorhead | INFORUM | Fargo, ND

"The annual Celtic Festival will be from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 12, at the Hjemkomst Center in Moorhead.

The festival celebrates the cultures of the Celtic Nations of Brittany, Cornwall, Isle of Man, Galicia, Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

New to this year’s festival is Highland Paddy, a group performing high energy rebel songs and instrumental jigs with a variety of instruments including the fiddle, pennywhistle, bouzouki, mandolin, bodhran and percussion. Also new this year is the duo Chad McAnally, a Scottish harp champion, and Shawn McBurnie, singing Old Irish."

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Student crowned Chicago's 2011 St. Patricks Day Queen - News

"Sarah Gorecki's last name may be Polish, but for this year's St. Patrick's Day Parade, the DePaul student is letting her Irish side shine.

On Feb. 20, Gorecki, 21, was chosen from more than 100 candidates to be Chicago's 'St. Patrick's Day Queen' for 2011.

The contest, sponsored by the Chicago Journeymen Plumbers Local 130, is part of the larger St. Patrick's Day festivities; a series of events celebrating Irish heritage in Chicago and culminating in the city's famous St. Patrick's Day Parade, which will be held this year on March 12.

According to the parade committee website, contestants must be unmarried women between the ages of 17 and 27 and, of course, must be of Irish descent. The women, who are only known by their first names to the judges, are judged for their 'grace, sincerity, beauty, poise, personality and wit' before the final five are chosen to be the queen and court."

Abington St. Patrick’s Day Parade

"Abington —
Abington St. Patrick’s Day Parade will take place this year on Sunday, March 20, starting at 1 p.m. To learn about the history of this event, stop by Bailey’s Garage, St. Patrick’s Square, where the parade will once again kick off. Jack Bailey is always glad to share the tale.

The 32nd year of the parade will include 12 marching bands. Five bagpipe bands, four high school bands, two drum corps and the Cosmo Legion Band have been signed. Many local businesses and youth and civic groups will participate, and many decorative floats will be featured.

Plan to make it a whole day of fun with family and friends. Join others after the parade at the K of C Hall, Hancock Street, Abington, where entertainment, including step dancers, food, refreshment and many raffles will be offered."

Craving Irish music? Monmouth County Library has it

Next week is Marchand that means all the St. Patricks celebrations cannot be far behind.

If youre looking for some appropriate music to get you in the St. Pats mood, look no further than the Monmouth County Library. Several branches are featuring a little bit of green concerts, sure to put a Celtic lilt in your step.

Let the road rise up before you and lead you to a Library concert:

-- Irish Harp Music, 11 a.m., Friday, March 4, at the Eastern Branch Library, 1001 Route 35 in Shrewsbury. Presented as part of the First Friday for Seniors series. Noted harpist Majorie Mollenauer of Colts Neck will give a concert that will include a selection of Irish favorites. She will also discuss the history of the harp. Call 1-866-941-8188 for more information.

-- The Trinity Celtic Band Concert, 7 p.m., Tuesday, March 8, at the Wall Township Library, 2700 Allaire Road, Wall. Trinity is known for their unique approach to traditional songs as well as driving reels and jigs. Their instruments include fiddle, flute pennywhistle, mandolin, uilleann pipes, banjos, button accordion, bodhran and guitar. Call 732-440-8877 for more information.

Craving Irish music? Monmouth County Library has it | The Asbury Park Press | APP.com

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