Monday, 30 April 2012

Kilfenora Ceili Band in Concert at Clasaċ - 12th May

Comhaltas Ceoltóirí ÉireannComhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann (Photo credit: Wikipedia)The world renowned Kilfenora Ceili Band will celebrate the Dublin launch of their latest CD “Chapter Eight” in Clasaċ, the Regional Resource Centre of Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Eireann, on Saturday 12th May 2012. “The Clasaċ Theatre on the Alfie Byrne Road in Clontarf is perfect for our Dublin launch” according to the Kilfenora Ceili Band leader John Lynch who says that this is the band’s first concert in Dublin in over two years. The band has added viola, cello and double bass to the traditional ten-piece line-up which will give them a unique sound when they take to the stage in Clasaċ.


Clareen, County Offaly, near to Clareen and Br.... (Photo credit: Wikipedia)June 8th – 10th, 2012

The organisers would like to welcome you to their Traditional Weekend which takes place from Friday, June 8th to Sunday, June 10th this year.

The Traditional Weekend started out as a day, but through progression and popularity it has become a welcomed weekend throughout the district of south Offaly and the whole country– having people grace then all the way from Sliabh Luachra. The Traditional Day was set up four years ago to remember the past in story and tradition and make it available to the younger generations, so that the culture will not be lost, but will live on in future generations. The primary charity is the National Council for the Blind of Ireland.

This year it is hoped to launch a CD of folklore on the Friday evening, June 8th at 9.00pm in the specially erected Marquis at Clareen GAA field. On Saturday June 9th they will have a Sean Nós Dancing workshop given by Adrian Moriarty all the way from Sliabh Luachra, 2.00 – 6.00pm Sunday is the main event, 12.30pm – 7.30 pm with lots of fun and interests for young, middle aged and old.

Musicians, singers and dancers are welcome to join with the local musicians, singers and dancers. An hour will be devoted to set dancing from 4.00pm – 5.00pm on the Sunday. Sets will be called by Mary Mc Geeney and music will be provided by Martin O’Donoghue and friends from Galway. Also there will be a Sean Nós demonstration on Sunday, June 10th.

Again, come and enjoy – ‘is feidir linn!’

For further information please contact: John Fowler 087 6835528 or Pat Mahon 087 2071443.



Tommy Peoples(Photo credit: Wikipedia)Monaghan town is poised to host yet another great festival of Irish music, song and the craic when Féile Oriel comes to town for the May Bank Holiday weekend.
Like everyone else, the Féile organisers have been feeling the economic pressure — but they have not only kept the show on the road again this year, they’ve come up trumps with a sizzling hot programme of top name acts.
A quick look through the menu should convince festival goers that there’s enough on offer here to keep their troubled minds well away from household charges, water charges, bankrupt banks and other nightmarish news, at least for the duration of the upcoming holiday weekend!
Headlining acts at the Club na Féile in the town centre’s Westenra Hotel include Four Men and a Dog, At First Light and a double bill with Reel It In and Síoda.
The Reel It In and Síoda double-header on Friday 4th May will see two great young bands raise the roof, and there should some extra tension given the fact that Reel It In is all guys while Síoda is gals alone! This one will be well worth the €10 asking price.

Quebec’s Le Vent du Nord Announce UK Tour & New Album

Nicolas Boulerice of Le Vent du Nord at London... (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Quebec’s progressive folk band Le Vent du Nord return with a UK tour and their seventh album entitled ‘Tromper Le Temps’ which translates as cheating or deceiving time! They will also tour the UK in May & June 2012.

Renowned as ambassadors of Francophonie, Le Vent du Nord are also largely acknowledged as one of the key groups in Quebec’s traditional folk music revival. Since their formation in August 2002 the band has enjoyed great success which has allowed them to take their music to other countries.

Le Vent Du Nord (Wind from the North) perform traditional Québécois music in French which is heavily influenced by Celtic music from both Ireland and Brittany. The group use a very diverse range of musical instruments augmented by Québécois Foot Percussion presented via a most entertaining, energetic and engaging stage show.

Nicolas Boulerice (vocals, hurdy gurdy, piano, piano accordion) + Olivier Demers (fiddle, electric guitar, clogging, mandolin, vocals) + Réjean Brunet (basses, diatonic accordion, jaw harp, piano, vocals) + Simon Beaudry (vocals, bouzouki, guitar)

Tromper Le Temps “Cheating Time” is as much a statement as an observation. Nicolas Boulerice, Olivier Demers, Réjean Brunet Simon Beaudry are four musicians exploring and playing music of yesterday, today, and possible tomorrow. The album features a sound that has found its identity over the course of a decade of touring; the band has played close to 1,000 concerts in North America and Europe.

11th SKERRIES TRAD MUSIC WEEKEND » Irish Music Magazine

Mary BerginCover of Mary Bergin2012 marks the 11th Skerries Trad Music Weekend and sees this wonderful event establishing itself as the signature Trad Music Festival of Irelands’ east coast. The picturesque seaside town of Skerries in North County Dublin plays host to a weekend full of music, song and dance reflecting the unique culture of the Fingal region. Leading artists travel to Skerries where they join with locals and visitors in a celebration of our Irish heritage.

This year the Weekend features a selection of top class individual performers including: Mary Bergin, Liam O’ Connor, Máire O’Keeffe, Siobhán Peoples, Con ‘Fada’ O Drisceóil, Mairéad Casey, Conal Ó Gráda, Mick O’Brien and many more as well as some notable ensembles such as The Bonny Men and the Brock McGuire Band.

Timmy Dolan, Peter Nestor, Pakie Duignan, John Butler, Patsy Hanly, Bren...

Five reasons why Irish trad has been reinvigorated in 2012 | Nialler9 Music Blog

Martin HayesCover of Martin Hayes"Trad is as big a part of our heritage as it’s perceived that Aran jumpers, sheep, Guinness and leprechauns are. So it’s not surprising that the genre of music, in terms of a modern context, is often maligned as old-fogey music or music for pubs and rural areas. It’s understandable that trad will be disregarded by succeeding generations who hit upon their twenties who have grown up with it their whole lives in favour of a Skrillex drop or the more global R&B chart pop or something.
But there are movements afoot. Just as those who said the Irish language would die out were proven wrong by a reclamation of the language in the last 15 years by the very people who hated studying it in Irish schools (its neverending grammar and distinct lack of speaking the actual thing was the definition of no craic), so too, is Irish trad being reclaimed, being pulled back from the brink of its own folk obscurity and a lot of that work is being lead by a few individuals. Here are five reasons why Irish trad music is now very much modern music."

How Paul Brady got cool again

Paul BradyCover of Paul BradyPaul Brady has been in music long enough to know it's never plain sailing but he remains impressively cheerful about the whole business.

The Tyrone-born singer-songwriter, will be 65 next month and his new compilation album reflects the range of his work as a writer and musician (he also plays guitar, piano and whistle).

Brady says: "I am seen as something of the elder statesman now. Looked at retrospectively, my career has had its ups and downs."

He adds, with a smile: "The Irish are the first to diss their own as someone who has gone out of fashion but, I'm happy to say, it seems I am cool again. Maybe it's age, a sort of 'Leonard Cohen effect'. The good thing for me is that I have always had an audience. I think it's hard for some young musicians to make headway nowadays, because a 'showbusiness' approach is seen as a bit of an anathema. It's not rocket science. You need to project yourself and the people who have spent money on seats deserve to be entertained. That doesn't have to mean selling out."

The main reason Brady has a loyal - and expanding - audience is the quality of his albums. The first one I heard, back in 1981, was Hard Station, which was a memorable piece of work. New then to Brady's solo work, I wasn't caught up in any debate about what a radical departure it was from the traditional 'folk' sound of 1978's Welcome Here Kind Stranger.

RTÉ announces NCH Riverdance line-up

Eleanor McEvoyCover of Eleanor McEvoyJoining composer Whelan and the RTÉ CO under conductor David Brophy will be: fiddle player Zoë Conway, accordionist Máirtín O'Connor, vocalist Eleanor McEvoy, uilleann piper Matt Cassidy, dancers Yolanda Gonzalez Obrado and Mick Donegan, Crash Ensemble and the UCD Choral Scholars.

The concert will include the world premiere of the Symphonic Suite from Riverdance, Caracena from The Seville Suite, The Currach and Evening Céilí from Inishlacken, An Chistin from Carna, Jazzical Cyclebike, Seabird, Flying Blind, Lift the Wings, Shivna and The Heart's Cry.

Whelan said: "The idea for a Riverdance Symphonic Suite has been on my radar for some time.

"Over the years I have often had requests from foreign orchestras for a full-length concert piece containing the music from the show.

"As my original score incorporated traditional instruments, it was not always easy to assemble the various ethnic elements for a concert in say, Japan.

Friday, 27 April 2012

Galway songstress comes to the Passionfruit

PianoPiano (Photo credit: me5otron) "Galway songstress, Aisling Quinn spent her formative years devouring music without prejudice to particular styles or genres. Home was full of instruments and Aisling was tinkering on pianos and strumming guitars for as long as she can remember. Piano was the first instrument she learned formally, but like most teenagers, the discipline to practise escaped her.

So, inspired by jazz and blues albums from the 30s and 40s and her mum’s Carole King LPs, she decided to go down a more laid-back style of jamming, teaching herself as she went rather than being penned in by formal, structured lessons. Her curiosity and love of sounds led her to pick up many other instruments such as mandolin, flute, violin, melodica, bodhran, and glockenspiel.

One of her first breaks in the industry came in 2009 when musician Albert Niland happened upon her music. This discovery resulted not only in an Irish tour with Albert Niland but also, as word spread, another Irish tour with much lauded performer, Roesy.

Aisling plays the Passionfruit Theatre, Athlone on Friday May 4. Tickets are €10 and can be booked by calling Fiona on (086) 3338457.

For more information see

Comhaltas: Blog: Fleadh Cheoil Dates 2012

 Comhaltas runs annual festivals of Irish traditional music, dance, song and language called Fleadh Cheoil. All Fleadh Cheoil dates are available in the Events section of the

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ZoukFest 2012 Irish Traditional Music Weekend Classes

With Caoimhin O'Raghaillaigh, Mick O'Brien, Sean McElwain, Eliot Grasso and more.

NOTE: Classes are progressive and sequential, so they are numbered accordingly, i.e., “Fiddle 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.” In other words, there will be no concurrent/conflicting classes for any single instrument. Those who wish will be able to take the entire fiddle track 1-5 or the entire uilleann pipes track 1-5, etc. The actual class schedule with exact times will be posted soon.

ZoukFest 2012 Irish Traditional Music Weekend Class List

Top ten 'must see' attractions - Drogheda Arts Festival

Drogheda from the south. In the foreground is ...(Photo credit: Wikipedia)THE DROGHEDA Arts Festival takes place from May 3rd-7th this year and promises to have something for everyone. From an extensive line up, Hubert Murphy selects his top ten of 'must see' attractions for next week.


A PRODUCTION with the name 'Wheelchair on My Face' must be worth checking out.

It's in the Droichead on Thursday, May 3, at 8.30 p.m.

Sonya Kelly wrote it and performs it (no better combination). She's part of the Savage Eye team so expect humour, with a dash of acting thrown in.

It's about a seven year old getting her eyes tested by a nurse and finding out she'll need glasses, after a few embarrassing incidents.

The critics love this 55 minute show. Tickets: €10/€8. Booking. Tel: 041 9833946.

Damien Dempsey talks Barney McKenna, upcoming Irish musicians and playing in a Filipino prison

Seize the Day (album)Seize the Day (album) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Damien Dempsey talked to JOE recently about his charity work, Barney McKenna's passing and the current state of Irish music.

Damo Dempsey has been on the go for a while now.

That’s often easy to forget as he’s still in his mid-thirties playing traditional Irish music in a genre that is dominated by bushy-faced sixty year olds for the most part.

Another reason why people forget this is that he blends the traditional and modern with an injection of contemporary bite and social commentary.

When JOE catches up with Damo he explains why he makes the music that he does.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Galway Youth Orchestra concert

"GALWAY YOUTH Orchestra will play Seapoint Leisure Centre, Salthill this Saturday at 8pm to celebrate the orchestra’s 30th birthday.

The concert will feature 120 young musicians under the direction of conductors Michael Dooley, Joanne Cater, Peter Berrill, and John Fleming.

The programme for the concert will include performances by all four GYO orchestras playing a variety of classical and jazz pieces. September auditions for new members will be held on Sunday May 6. For more information see, call 091 - 521324, or email"
Galway Youth Orchestra concert:

The Contemporary Music Centre presents a New Music Literary Trail in Drumcliffe

The Round Tower at Drumcliffe, County Sligo. A...The Round Tower at Drumcliffe, County Sligo. An original photo taken by me in June 2006. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)The Contemporary Music Centre presents an outdoor music trail in partnership with Music in Drumcliffe in the grounds of St. Columba’s Church and its environs throughout the Music in Drumcliffe Festival, 11am – 7pm, 5 – 7 May 2012. The trail celebrates the rich connections between W.B.Yeats and Irish composers specifically, whilst also highlighting the many associations between Irish music and Irish literature.

The Trail consists of three outdoor listening posts featuring a total of four works by Irish composers: Brian Boydell, Rhona Clarke and Donnacha Dennehy; Brian Boydell’s Four Yeats Poems; Rhona Clarke’s Tread Softly and Five Songs; and Donnacha Denney’s That the Night Come. A walk and talk of the New Music Literary Trail led by Irish composer Benjamin Dwyer will take place 1.30pm, 6 May. Admission is free to both the trail itself and participation on the Walk and Talk.

In tandem with the New Music Literary Trail at Drumcliffe, the Contemporary Music Centre, presents its Art of Sound multi-media exhibition throughout the month of May in the Ballymote Community Library, Co. Sligo. The Art of Soundexhibition features photographer Eugene Langan’s dramatic and perceptive photographs of Irish composers. An audio-guide narrated by Eamonn Lawlor, RTÉ lyric fm, brings to life the music that is displayed. The exhibition will run from 1 – 31 May inclusive during library hours and admission is free. For further information on Ballymote Community Library, please contact tel: 071 9111669 or

The Contemporary Music Centre presents a New Music Literary Trail in partnership with Music in Drumcliffe, at the Music in Drumcliffe Fetival, 5 – 7 May 2012, Sligo « Contemporary Music Centre, Ireland:

Early line-up revealed - Galway Early Music Festival

The spire of St. Nicholas' church, in late Dec...The spire of St. Nicholas' church, in late December. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)Nicholas Carolan, Director of the Traditional Music Archive in Dublin and presenter of RTE’s archival music series 'Come West Along the Road', and TG4’s 'Siar an Bóthar' has revealed details of the 2012 Galway Early Music Festival, which runs from the 17 to 20 May.
Galway's Early Music festival will take you on a musical journey to explore what happens when popular culture and high art meet and mingle.
This year’s festival welcomes a range of high calibre, international performances. It opens on Thursday 17 May in St Nicholas’ Church at 8pm with an impressive performance by the world-renowned and highly acclaimed Cois Cladaigh Chamber Choir.
Other highlights include Les Musicians de Saint Julien and Francois Lazarevitch, as they perform Le Berger Poet /The Shepherd Poet at St Nicholas Collegiate Church at 8.30pm. This concert will feature a selection of French pastoral music of the eighteenth century and intimate pieces for flute, musette and hurdy-gurdy, resulting in music full of instrumental colour and in musical character.
Get ready for a foot-tapping weekend of simple melody, complex harmony and rhythmic dancing in the liveliest medieval town in Europe!
For a full programme of events and ticket prices, visit or check them out on Facebook and Twitter by searching for Galway Early Music Festival.

Paddy Moloney of The Chieftains relies on new indie musicians as band enters 6th decade

Paddy MoloneyCover of Paddy MoloneyNAPLES, Fla. — When Paddy Moloney started considering possible collaborators for The Chieftains’ 50th anniversary album, he knew the kind of artists he didn’t want: Mick Jagger, Sinead O’Connor, Van Morrison.

He’d worked with all of those stars in the past: “I didn’t want to go in that generation,” he explained.

“I wanted a newer generation; new kids on the block, you might say. Great indie contemporary stars of music.”

Still, the 72-year-old Irish music titan admits to being a bit nervous about bringing young musicians into the Chieftains fold.

“I was 50-50 about doing it,” he said. “Because I haven’t been happy about what I’ve been hearing over the last 20 years, the music that’s been coming out. I just wonder, is it music at all, you know? It’s all commercial.”

Here’s who Moloney ended up with on “Voice of Ages”: Best new artist Grammy winner Bon Iver, the Pistol Annies, the Civil Wars, the Secret Sisters, the Carolina Chocolate Drops and the Decemberists — to name a few. It was the band’s first real collaboration with indie rockers, and Moloney couldn’t be happier with the results.


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