Friday, March 27, 2015

Gigs, sessions, CDs, and more gigs...

So much has happened the past couple weeks….

Haley and Donie Carroll open the event in NYC.

 Haley was lucky enough to be invited to two Sober St. Patrick's Day events this year. The Sunday before St. Patrick's Day was the event in Philadelphia and on Tuesday was the Sober St. Patrick's Day event in Manhattan. After our first St. Patrick's Day outing in a pub when Haley was five years old, I must say what a pleasure it is to have dry events for her to enjoy playing the music she loves. The Sober St. Patrick's Day events are a wonderful celebration of true Irish culture, dance, and music. Such a great idea Bill Reilly had a few years ago!

In Philadelphia, Haley played with her Méara Meara bandmates, Dylan and Keegan then the three of them joined all the other fabulous musicians for the finale. In Manhattan, Haley and Donie Carroll opened the show then she performed with her Converse Trio mates, Keegan and Alex, for a set before they joined the All Star Ceili Band on stage for most of the rest of the program.

The All Star Ceili Band in NYC
Haley and Dylan's CDs, "Heart on a String" arrived and they began selling them online on their website and for digital download on  Here they are autographing the CDs for their customers.

Last Thursday, Haley, Dylan, their friends Livia and Emily, and I drove out a night early to beat the snow storm here at home because they had a performance in Vermont as part of the Sligo Six. We had to leave after Dylan got home from work at 10pm, pick up the girls and their van, and I drove until 2am when we stopped at a hotel for the night.

We work around 8am and enjoyed out free breakfast before completing our journey. We took our time, stopped a few places for Dylan to take photos, and arrived in Vermont in time for supper with Mark, his wife, and our hostess for the weekend, Jesusa. After supper, we drove to Jesusa's where the girls swam in her family's indoor basement pool for over an hour! Fun! They went to bed at 9pm and fell asleep before their heads hit their pillows.

Saturday morning, the kids got up and ate a delicious breakfast before rehearsing for a couple hours with Patrick (the trio coach). Then we headed to a session a few towns over before sound check for the performance.

Sligo Six sound check.
The kids did a great job in the performance! Everyone did their best and it went really well! We got up really early in the morning Sunday and drove to White Plains, NY for fiddle lessons for Haley and Livia before making our way back home.

The amazing accordion player, James Keane (Haley's buddy Paraic's uncle), attended their weekly Monday night session. Wow! He played some amazing tunes and there were musicians all over the pub.

Last night Haley and I attended a small private house concert with Martin Hayes and Dennis Cahill. I can tell you this is the very best way to hear Irish music…up close and personal and acoustically…nothing separating us from the musicians. Martin was on top of his game!

He was invited up for an encore and instead of playing, asked Haley if she'd use his fiddle to play a few tunes (she didn't have her own).  Haley said initially, his fiddle felt difficult to get sound out of but once she played the first tune and got used to it, she loved the way it sounded. Fiddle envy. She might have played all night if she could have.

A few years ago, while driving to the airport on our way to Ireland, we were listening to NJ101.5's Dennis and Judi who were doing a "Where Are You Now?" topic hour. Haley called and told them she was on her way to Ireland to compete in the All Ireland. They asked her to fiddle them a tune over the phone then looked her up on youtube. She called again about a year ago to talk to them about homeschooling.

Yesterday, they were doing an hour about "Titles You Hold." Haley called to tell them about her All Ireland fiddle title and they invited her and Dylan to come in today for lunch with them and to play some Irish music on air. So we did.

The kids have played on a couple other radio stations over the years but this was the largest. The hosts, Dennis and Judi were so nice to them and there was a huge spread of food brought in by Biagio's.

Here's a link to the radio station's post about the hour with video.  

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