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General News

General News

Line-up changes for Allan Yn Y Fan

Welsh traditional band Allan Yn Y Fan has recently celebrated its 22nd year on the road with a major European tour. Since starting the tour in September, the band has clocked up over 3500 miles, with dates in Luxembourg, Germany, England and Wales.

Moves afoot for Shepley Spring Festival

After a small event last year following the death of Shepley co-director, James McKinlay, the festival is back this May and is making some big changes – it is moving to a new indoor site.

TG4 Gradam Ceoil

The 2019 winners of the TG4 Gradam Ceoil awards have been announced. Winning the accolade of Musician of the Year is Meath based flute player, Catherine McEvoy. The Young Musician award goes to accordion player Conor Connolly, Singer of the Year goes to Thomas McCarthy, the Musical Collaboration award goes to Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill, the Outstanding Contribution award to Brendan Mulkere, while the Lifetime Achievement award goes to Nicky and Anne McAuliffe. Congratulations all.

Annotated discography of Peter Kennedy’s recordings now available

Peter Kennedy was an English folk song collector who died in 2006. After his death, the files associated with his recordings were passed on to the British Library for future researchers to explore and use. For many years, Reg Hall has been working with the files, and as a result, a 352 page document entitled Peter Kennedy’s Published Recordings Of British And Irish Traditional Music And Related Material: An Annotated Discography, has now been published and is available to read from the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library website.

Máire Ní Chathasaigh to feature in RTÉ Lyric FM’s anniversary commission

RTÉ lyric FM is celebrating its 20th birthday by commissioning three new works, with a total prize fund of €14,000 available to composers born or living in Ireland. These new compositions will be performed live by the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra and RTÉ Philharmonic Choir at a gala concert on 1st May 2019. One of the three pieces will be a 10-15 minute Irish harp concerto in three movements, and traditional musician Máire Ní Chathasaigh has been selected to be the soloist, featuring alongside the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra.

Nigel Forster burglary

Back in June, luthier Nigel Forster’s Hexham workshop was robbed and over £40,000 worth of stock was stolen – a staggering loss for the instrument maker who has had to refund customers who had already paid towards the items stolen. A list of what was taken, including photographs, is available to read on Nigel’s website, and he asks people in the music community to be vigilant, as the various guitars and other instruments, including a Model O Celtic mandolin, an eight string sapele and spruce mandola, a 1970s Fender MusicMaster bass guitar, a Ralph Plumb viola, and several other pieces, are distinctive and identifiable and may well appear at some stage.

New Folk Song Subject Index at the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library

The English Folk Dance and Song Society’s Vaughan Williams Memorial Library, based at Cecil Sharp House, London, is undertaking a substantial new project to index, for the first time, what folk songs are about. This important new subject index for folk songs, along with a thesaurus of keywords, will be made freely available on the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library’s website. The new tool will provide a powerful new way to explore the Library’s comprehensive online resources, alongside existing indexes and catalogues.

The James M. Carpenter Collection goes online

The American Folklife Centre, Vaughan Williams Memorial Library and the James Madison Carpenter Collection Project team are pleased to announce the addition of the James Madison Carpenter Collection to the VWML Digital Archive.

Resound – a musical tribute to Alan Surtees

A CD launched in tribute to the co-founder of Shrewsbury Folk Festival has already raised more than £4,000 for a charity set up in his name to give financial support to young and emerging musicians. The profits from Resound, a 15-track recording featuring tracks from artists including Oysterband, Jon Boden, Leveret, Lady Maisery and Karine Polwart, will be ploughed into the Alan Surtees Trust.

New triple CD of the fiddle music of Mickey Doherty

A three-CD recording of the music of Mickey Doherty, Garvan Hill, has just been released. Mickey Doherty was one of the famous family of fiddlers who travelled throughout Donegal for generations playing their music and plying their tinsmiths trade. Garvan Hill features more than three hours of his music recorded by the Irish Folklore Commission in the Croaghs outside Glenties in 1949. It’s a joint project of the National Folklore Collection UCD and the Donegal fiddlers’ organisation, Cairdeas na bhFidliéri. It’s produced by Rab Cherry and Dermot McLaughlin.