Iarla Ó Lionáird (vocals)
Iarla Ó Lionáird grew up and learned his craft in the musical heartland in the West Cork Gaeltacht where he established himself both as a masterful exponent of Sean Nós Song and as a pioneer in its renewal and development. Always an artist on his own journey Ó Lionáird signed to the prestigious Real World Records label in the mid-1990’s with whom he would go on to make many groundbreaking recordings with the multimillion-selling Afro Celt Sound System. His solo career was inevitable and would begin with the acclaimed and powerful “Seven Steps To Mercy” (Real World Records). Produced by Michael Brook, the album saw Ó Lionáird create a new and unique work in which his voice soars with power and tenderness. He went on to release the soundtrack for “I Could Read The Sky” and the “Invisible Fields” (both on Real World Records) which melds electronic soundscapes with sean nós to stunning effect. He released his latest solo album, “Foxlight” on Real World in 2011.
Dennis Cahill (guitar)
Dennis Cahill is a master guitarist, a native of Chicago born to parents from the Dingle Peninsula in County Kerry, Ireland. He studied at the city’s prestigious Music College before becoming an active member of the local music scene. Cahill’s spare, essential accompaniment to Martin Hayes’ fiddle is acknowledged as a major breakthrough for guitar in the Irish tradition. In addition to his work with Martin, Dennis has performed with such renowned fiddlers as Liz Carroll, Eileen Ivers and Kevin Burke, as well as many Irish musicians on both sides of the Atlantic. He is a sought after producer for musical artists whom he records in his own Chicago studio and is also an accomplished photographer.
Thomas Bartlett (piano)
Thomas Bartlett, aka Doveman, grew up in Vermont, and began playing ukelele at age three, after the wardens at his daycare found him strumming a block and decided he could probably put resonant strings to good use. He began playing piano at age five, and never stopped—dropping out of high school to study in London with Maria Curcio, one of the 20th century’s greatest classical music teachers. Thomas went on to Columbia University for a year but dropped out, again—this time to concentrate on his classical music studies, until he dropped out again!— this time to play with bands. He quickly become one of the most in-demand sidemen in New York City. Thomas has played or recorded with Antony & the Johnsons, Nico Muhly, Laurie Anderson, David Byrne, The Frames, Bebel Gilberto, Arto Lindsay, The National, and Yoko Ono. He makes music as Doveman. When listening to this music you should keep in mind artists such as Frederic Chopin, Cat Power, Keith Jarrett, Talk Talk. His latest release is the eponymous Doveman on Brassland.
Martin Hayes (fiddle)
Martin Hayes’ unique sound, his mastery of the fiddle, his acknowledgement of the past and his ability to place the tradition within a wider contemporary context, combine to create a unique and insightful interpretation of Irish Music. He has drawn inspiration from many musical genres, but remains grounded in the music he grew up with in East County Clare where the tradition he inherited from his late father, P. Joe Hayes, was the formative influence on his musical accent and ideas. He has recorded two acclaimed solo albums, “Martin Hayes” and “Under the Moon” on the Green Linnet label and three duet albums with Dennis Cahill: “The Lonesome Touch”, “Live in Seattle”, and “Welcome Here Again”. Martin is the Artistic Director of the Masters of Tradition Festival in Bantry, West Cork and the touring show of the same name. He also tours and records with Peadar Ó Riada and Caoimhin Ó Raghallaigh in Triúr.