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Celtic Thunder’s Colm Keegan Brings Irish History to the Philadelphia Irish Center

Colm Keegan made his mark as a principal singer in the well-known Celtic Thunder, but before he embarked upon a performance career, he was a high school music teacher, with a master’s degree in music.

For years, he’s thought about a way to merge Irish history with music, and there never seemed like a good way to do it—until now.

On Saturday, March 9, Keegan brings the first chapter of a new series called Irish History through Music to the Commodore John Barry Arts & Cultural Center (The Irish Center), 6815 Emlen Street, at the corner of Carpenter and Emlen (SEPTA’s Carpenter station on the Chestnut Hill West Line), in the Mount Airy neighborhood of Philadelphia. Continue Reading

Audio, Music

Podcast: Interview with Oisín Mac Diarmada of Téada

In the world of Irish traditional music, you would be hard-pressed to find a more accomplished and creative group than Téada.

County Sligo fiddler Oisín Mac Diarmada, the group’s founder, recently sat down for an interview with irishphiladelphia.com. The conversation was wide-ranging, starting with his earliest days in County Clare learning the fiddle—sometimes when he might have preferred playing football to practicing—to a time when it seemed his career path might lie in the field of education, and ultimately to the successful career he has carved out with Téada and his talented bandmates.

The picture he paints is one of a musical journey ever evolving and ever more creative.

Téada will be appearing Thursday, February 21, at Sellersville Theater 1894, 24 West Temple Avenue in Sellersville. The show starts at 8 p.m. Doors open at 7:30. Ticket prices range from $21.50 to $29.50.

Tickets and more information here.

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

Audio

Podcast: Interview with Celtic Woman’s Tara McNeill

With her violin, Tara McNeill provides what she calls Celtic Woman’s fourth voice. And a lovely voice it is.

From early childhood, when she first took up violin, harp and singing, violin has always been her first love. The sound of the violin, she says, conveys layers of emotion that have always appealed to her.

In 2016, she realized a life’s ambition—joining Celtic Woman as a principal member, replacing the previous violinist Mairead Nesbitt. Continue Reading

Audio

Podcast: The Ins and Outs of DNA Testing

irishphiladelphia.com’s genealogy maven Lori Lander Murphy returns with another installment of Who’s Your Granny (with occasional editorial comment from her dog Daisy).

DNA testing is becoming more popular. There are many DNA testing services, and all employ different methods. Consequently, they may render different results. Some of them are more strongly focused on finding your family history, and some aren’t.

If you’re a genealogy beginner, what do you need to know?

Lori explains. Continue Reading

Audio, Genealogy

Podcast: A Beginner’s Guide to Irish Genealogy

You’ve just caught the Irish ancestry bug. But there’s so much to know before you start the search for where your people came from—isn’t there?

In the long run, yes, maybe. But if you’re a genealogy newbie, you can start digging up your ancestors—so to speak—with comparatively little knowledge. So says local genealogist Lori Lander Murphy, who is here to answer your questions.

Are we answering every question you could possibly have? Nope. With this audio podcast episode of “Who’s Your Granny,” we’re giving you just enough to begin to explore your roots. In future episodes, there will be more. But for now, sit back, settle in and listen to advice from our genealogy guru.

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

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.

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

Audio, Music

Podcast: Interview with Derek Warfield

Derek Warfield, leader of the Young Wolfe Tones, continues his illustrious musical career, now exceeding the 50-year mark. We recently interviewed him, and he looked back on those 50 years—his life, musical upbringing, career, and hopes for the future of the Irish musical tradition. Continue Reading