Irish music in June

June 5, 2016

June, when the weather is warm, the days are long and music festivals and concerts in Vermont are abundant. June is the true beginning of summer and what better way to enjoy it but with some Irish music. There are a couple of Irish music events around Vermont this month that you won’t want to miss:

Irish Music Festival – June 17-19

Turalough O'CarolanIf you like the music of Irish harper and composer, Turough O’Carolan, check out the 10th Annual Carolan festival, a festival filled with lessons, workshops, concerts, sessions, dancing and more, all celebrating the music of Turough O’Carolan.

This year’s featured performers include Irish harper, Máire Ní Chathasaigh and guitarist, Chris Newman. Other performers include harper Dominique Dodge, harper Hilary Farrington, piper Benedict Koehler, The Fiddleheads and more.  See the full line-up of performers and festival events.

Deadline for pre-registration and to pay for meals is June 10.

Date: June 17-19, 2016
Place: Worcester, Vermont
Register:  Contact Us

Irish Fiddler, Frankie Gavin – June 21

Frankie Gavin, FiddlerFrankie Gavin began playing whistle at age 4 and fiddle at age 10 and by the time he was 17 he placed first in the All Ireland Fiddle Competition and in the All Ireland Flute Competition on the same day. His influences were Michael Coleman and James Morrison and helped to form the band De Dannan in 1973. He has recorded 16 albums with the band and a handful of solo albums. He’s played with Stephane Grapelli, The Rolling Stones and Earl Scruggs. Learn more about Frankie.

Date: June 21, 2016
Time: 6-8:30pm
Place: Burlington Violin Shop, Church Street, Burlington, VT
Cost: $25
Register: email mark.sustic@gmail.com

There are only 40 seats available so register today!


St. Patrick’s Day festivities

March 5, 2016

I’m claiming March St. Patrick’s Month. I mean why limit the music and celebration to just one day? There is so much going on in the next few weeks it’s almost impossible to keep track of it all. Below is my attempt. In the meantime, check out this band coming to the Barre Opera house:

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Carolan Festival this weekend

June 16, 2015
Traditional Irish Music

Benedict & Hilary

Looking for something fun to do this weekend? This weekend marks the 9th Annual Carolan Festival, a gathering for people who play, listen, sing or dance to the music of Turlough Carolan, a blind Irish harper and composer.

The Irish festival takes place in a beautiful Vermont country setting overlooking the North Branch of the Winooski River and Worcester Range. The weekend will be filled with Open sessions, Workshops, Country & Ceili dancing, music & dance (English Country, Irish Ceili & Step, Morris& Rapper, sean nos, waltzing) performances & concert. Rain or Shine.

This is the only festival devoted to the music of Carolan in the USA- there are 2 O’Carolan Festivals in Ireland. Wonderful harpers will be performing (including Hilari Farrington), but many other instruments will also be played. The music lends itself to a wide spectrum of music, dance, and song.

Please visit the  website www.carolanfestvt.com for more info.


Enjoying St. Paddy’s Day in Vermont

March 7, 2015

button accordionMarch is one of my favorite months. It’s the month both my mother and grandmother were born, it’s the month where the days get so much longer, it’s also the month to celebrate Irish music. And you don’t need to be Irish to partake in the festivities.

Growing up in Boston, St. Patrick’s Day was always a huge celebration with parades, music, parties, and lots of drinking. As I got older and moved to Vermont, St. Paddy’s Day became less about testing my metabolism and more about sharing this poignant music with the masses who might not be exposed to it during the rest of the year.

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Liz Carroll Returns to Vermont

August 23, 2014

liz carroll irish fiddlerWhen I was first taking fiddle lessons I said to my teacher at the time, “I want to play fast.” She said “start listening to Liz Carroll.” So I did. And I fell in love with her music.

It’s not the speed of Liz’s playing that makes her such a brilliant player though, it’s the preciseness of her notes, the swing in her rhythm and lift she brings to the melody. Her ornaments are perfectly placed and every now and then she switches up the key or changes one major (or minor) note to bring color to the tune.

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Upcoming traditional music events

June 2, 2014

sunshineJune is one of my favorite months in Vermont. Mostly because it’s the start of summer. The grass has turned green, flowers have bloomed, caterpillars have turned to butterflies and I can finally leave the house without a warm jacket.

It’s also my favorite time of year because it’s the start of festival season. A time where I can combine my two favorite things: enjoying the outdoors and playing (or listening to) music. And there is no shortage of music in our fine little state -especially traditional music.

Here are a few upcoming concerts and festivals worthy of your attention:

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A Little Donegal in Vermont

March 9, 2014

by Katrina VanTyne

oisin mcauleyLast summer I was lucky enough to go to this fiddle school in Glencolmcille County Donegal, Ireland (feel free to check out the posts from my trip to Ireland). The style of Donegal music is very similar to the Cape Breton style of music which is probably why I love it so much. It’s fast, gritty and makes me just want to get up and dance. A Donegal player’s repertoire consists of more than just jigs and reels and an occasional hornpipe, they play all sorts of different types like polkas, mazurkas, highlands, barn dances, waltzes and more.

Unfortunately, there aren’t many true Donegal players in this area. Occasionally though, we are lucky to have some great players pass through town and share their knowledge. This coming weekend is one of those times.

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