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Jeff Meade

Audio, Music

Interview with Lunasa’s Trevor Hutchinson

The latest episode of “Tea with Irish Philly” features Trevor Hutchinson, who got up early one morning just to talk to us.

The band’s Irish Christmas show rolls into Wilmington’s Grand Opera House next Friday, December 14. (Details here.) The show also features vocalist Ashley Davis, a spectacular artist in her own right.

We chatted with Trevor about the show, guaranteed to get you in the spirit, along with the band’s latest album, Cas.

Here’s what he had to say. Listen to the podcast.

Editor’s note: All Irish Philly podcasts are now available on iTunes, Stitcher, TuneIn and Spotify.

How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

We have an exceptionally busy week, some of it with a holiday flair.

Here’s how to get your week in gear. There’s plenty to choose from.

On Saturday, the John Byrne Band puts in an appearance at Puck in Doylestown, starting at 8 p.m. You can find Puck at 1 Printers Alley.

McDade-Cara School of Irish Dance hosts the Irish You a Merry Christmas Dance Spectacular Sunday, December 9, from 2 to 4 p.m., at Archbishop Carroll High School, 11 Matsonford Road in Radnor. Tickets are available at the door—it’s $10 for adults, $5 for children under 10. Continue Reading

How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

Hoo boy, do we have a weekend for you!

In some cases, you’d have to very nearly be in two places at once, so unless you know some trick involving the space-time continuum, you’ll have to make some tough choices.

There are several events on Saturday.

From 10 a.m. to noon, help out some local families this Christmas by attending the second annual Knute’s Angels Breakfast with Santa Toy Drive. The event takes place at Haggerty’s Café, 2373 MacDade Boulevard in Holmes, Pa. Kids will love it. There will be face painting, a photo booth … and a visit from Santa! Continue Reading


Behind the Bar: JohnJoe Devlin

We met up with JohnJoe Devlin, pretty much a fixture at Plough & Stars, a busy, well-known gastropub on Second Street between Market and Chestnut in Old City Philadelphia. If you’re looking for a friendly face and a charming accent behind the bar—he’s from Scotland but from Irish stock, he says—Devlin fits that description to a T.

We asked him a few questions about his day-to-day. Here’s what he had to say. Continue Reading

Audio, News

Podcast: An Interview with Radio Host Marianne MacDonald

Listeners throughout the country tune in to hear Marianne MacDonald every Sunday at noon as she hosts “Come West Along the Road” on WTMR 800 AM. The show features traditional Irish music and interviews, along with local concert and event news.

She’s been hosting the show for many years, and for her, clearly, it’s a labor of love. “It’s a highlight of my week,” she says, “and I really look forward to hearing from my listeners.”

It would have to be a labor of love. The show takes a lot of preparation, and costs thousands of dollars to produce.

You can help out. An on-air two-hour pledge drive will take place this Sunday, December 2. Listeners can phone in their pledges and donations of any size at 856-962-8000. Continue Reading

Music, Videos

Sneak Preview: “The Christmas Letter,” With Cherish the Ladies and Don Stiffe

On Saturday, December 1, Cherish the Ladies with Don Stiffe take the stage at the Commodore Barry Arts & Cultural Center (the Irish Center) to present their amazing Celtic Christmas show. The show starts at 8 p.m. Tickets here.

One of the seasonal songs to be presented will be the poignant “The Christmas Letter,” with lead vocals performed by Stiffe. As the YouTube promo explains: “The song tells the sad story of forced immigration due to starvation and unemployment and a mother’s broken heart lamenting over the loneliness of a Christmas morning knowing that her family is forever torn apart and the only contact she’ll ever have is the letters that arrive for Christmas.”

Try listening to it without developing a little tremble in the lips and forming a few tears. Heart-breaking and lovely.

Here’s a sneak preview.

How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

We’re publishing early this week on the theory that a lot of us are still recovering from Turkey Day. I don’t know about you, but a long nap might be in order. Opening emails might be the last thing you do on Friday.

Besides, there’s a lot going on, and for some of it, the sooner you hear about it, the better.

So here we go. Take a deep breath. Continue Reading