Horslips was made up of a group of like-minded musicians, who happened to work in advertising in Dublin. The success of their single Johnny’s Wedding led to their 1972 album Happy to Meet, Sorry to Part and Celtic rock had found its feet. Along with Planxty and the Bothy Band, they changed how a generation [...]
By Mac Entee
The Bothy Band was a good idea waiting to happen. Around 1970, flute player Matt Molloy, fiddler Tommy Peoples, piper Peter Browne and singer Triona Ní Dhomhnaill had been performing in a group called 1691 along with singer Liam Weldon.
Piper Paddy Keenan had been playing around Dublin with singers Micheal and Triona Ni [...]
The McPeake family of Belfast were one of the few Irish pre-ballad boom groups. That they were better-known abroad than at home is illustrated by a story told about a conversation between Bob Dylan and Bono of U2 in 1984. The legendary singer asked what Bono thought of the McPeakes. The Dublin-born Bono had never [...]
Described by American writer Steve Winnick as “the spiritual godfathers” of today’s Irish music groups, The Dubliners were to the fore of the Irish ballad boom of the Sixties. They maintained a huge popularity at home and abroad for as long as health and physical endurance allowed. Initially known as The Ronnie Drew Group, comprising [...]
By Ronan Nolan
THE Clancys hailed from Carrick-on-Suir, Co Tipperary. Their mother loved a singsong – the least excuse would do, according to daughter Peg – and their father was an opera buff. Aunt Mary Jo’s in William Street was a popular house for gatherings, songs and set dancing. “I enjoyed it and learned a few [...]
The confederacy that was Sweeney’s Men had a huge influence on the development of Irish folk groups. The group was formed in the summer of 1966 by Johnny Moynihan, Andy Irvine and Joe Dolan. Singer, songwriter, artist and guitar player Dolan had been around the Dublin ballad scene in O’Donoghue’s at the start of the [...]
This mid-1960s close harmony group enjoyed immense success in Ireland. The original line-up, which used to play in the family pub in Slane, consisted of Adrienne Johnston, vocals, her sister Luci, vocals, and brother Michael, guitar.They were only performing as a group for six weeks when they came to national prominence by winning the first [...]
In the mid-1960s, Donal Lunny and Brian Bolger had been singing together in a group called The Emmet Folk Group with banjo player Mick Moloney.
The name Emmet Spiceland came about when they teamed up with Michael and Brian Byrne from Sheffield’s Spiceland Folk shortly before winning the Wexford Ballad contest in 1967. (In the previous [...]
Planxty could be described as Sweeneys Men with hindsight and uilleann pipes. In 1970 Christy Moore returned from the British folk circuit and assembled a group of musicians to record his second album Prosperous.They were an old schoolmate Dónal Lunny, Andy Irvine who had been in Sweeneys Men, piper Liam Og O Floinn and [...]