Session with the Pipers – Na Piobairí Uilleann

Leonard Barry | – originally from County Kerry but now living in Sligo has been playing the uilleann pipes since the age of 15 where he started under the guidance of Dave Hegarty in Tralee, County Kerry. Leonard’s introduction to the pipes came upon listening to his uncle’s Planxty and Bothy Band records, this in turn led him to the music of Willie Clancy, Leo Rowsome, Johnny Doran, Seamus Ennis and many more. Leonard has performed as a soloist and in different combinations over the years both in Ireland and abroad. Leonard regurlary teaches the pipes for Na Piobairí Uilleann at various events in Ireland and is a regular teacher at the Summer Schools. He has also thought at Tionols in Ireland, Europe and the  USA. Leonard released his latest solo CD “New Road” to critical acclaim in 2013 which led to the formation of the band New Road featuring Leonard, Seamie O’Dowd, Rick Epping and Andy Morrow, they soon after released a follow up CD “Stone Walls and Street Lights”.

Paul McGrattan – who comes from Dublin’s Northside, has been playing flute since an early age and is now regarded as one of the top traditional flute players in Ireland. His first influence was the South Donegal fiddle tradition, which he heard on his holidays in the area as a child, later influences were his uncle Paddy Treacy, Seán Potts and Sligo flute player John Egan. As well as a duet album with Paul O’Shaughnessy “Within a Mile of Dublin’ he has also released a fine solo album ‘The Frost is All Over’. When not performing with the group Paul spends much of his time teaching the next generation of flute players.

Oisín Mac Diarmada was born in 1978 in County Clare, and grew up in Crusheen. He started playing the fiddle from early his early years, and began winning competitions at age eight. Two years later, Oisín won fiddle solo and duet titles as the All-Ireland Junior Fleadh Cheoil in 1988. In 1999, Oisín won the All Ireland Fiddle title at the Fleadh Cheoil.

In 2000, Oisín graduated from Trinity College, Dublin/RIAM (Royal Irish Academy of Music). In 2001, Oisín and his friends including bouzouki/guitar player Seán Mc Elwain, bodhrán player Tristan Rosenstock formed the Irish traditional music group ‘’Téada.’’ In 2008 he joined, the Innisfree Céilí Band with brother Cormac and sister Máire became the first band from the North Connacht region to win the coveted All-Ireland Senior Céilí Band Competition at Fleadh Cheoil. He is the director of SCT (Scrúdu Ceol Tíre) Traditional Irish Music Examinations at CCÉ, manager of  his record label Ceol Productions and his music management company Musical Ireland.

Rosie Stewart from Belcoo, County Fermanagh, is among the most distinguished of Irish traditional singers. Chosen as “Traditional Singer of the Year” for 2004 by TG4, her distinctive voice and style, the dramatic intensity of her “big” song performances and the wicked pleasure she takes in comic ones, make her one of the most sought after singers in Ireland. She has performed throughout Ireland, on radio and television, and in Britain and North America. She has been singing for as long as she can remember and attributes her love of songs to her late father, the singer Packie McKeaney, a major influence and a great encouragement in her career. Stewart is noted for her artistry, her forceful, direct manner and purity of voice and style. She sings local Fermanagh songs including “Adieu to Lovely Garrison,” the title of her highly acclaimed CD on Spring Records (1998).

Listen to Rosie Stewart at An Góilín on ITMA –

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