02 July 2014

Bluegrass Evening at Cairncastle Festival, 23 July 2014

Thanks to Adrian Rolston of the Cairncastle Ulster Scots organisation for this news:

Cairncastle festival committee are again holding a Bluegrass Evening on the Wednesday of their festival, which is on 23 July 2014 in the Halfway House Hotel (above), Coast Road, Ballygally, four miles north of Larne town, Co. Antrim.

In addition to the musical evening, workshops will be held in Cairncastle village on the history of bluegrass music (Wednesday 23 July) and fiddle manufacture (Friday 25 July).

The evening commences with the Count Me In Bluegrass Band from Co. Down (above), having established a reputation as one of Ireland’s finest up-and-coming traditional bluegrass bands, and comprising Philip Steel (double bass), Brian Crawford (rhythm guitar, vocal), Noel Campbell (mandolin, lead vocal), Colin Henry (dobro, vocal), John Savage (guitar), Geordie McAdam (fiddle), Alan McAdam (banjo) and Olivia Henry, who is Colin’s teenage daughter and an excellent singer. The band has performed widely throughout Northern Ireland - e.g. Omagh bluegrass festival 2013, and Ownies bluegrass night at Carrickfergus, Co. Antrim.

They will be followed by Janet Holmes, accompanied by Colin Henry (left; photo by Richie Tindall). Janet is one of Northern Ireland’s finest solo female bluegrass artists; her strong melodies and thought-provoking lyrics encompass bluegrass and Americana music with a voice that has been described as true, soulful, and simply beautiful.

The evening will end with the Down and Out Bluegrass Band (below) from Co. Antrim, who have established a reputation as one of Ireland’s finest bluegrass bands, playing traditional bluegrass heavily influenced by classic artists such as Bill Monroe, Flatt & Scruggs, and the Stanley Brothers. Comprising Richard Leeman (guitar, banjo, mandolin), Mal Duffin (fiddle), Howard Walker (banjo, guitar, mandolin), John Denby (mandolin, guitar), and Roy Brown (guitar, bass), they have performed at festivals in Ireland (Omagh, Athy, Westport, and more), England (Cornish Bluegrass Festival), and Scotland (Guildtown, Moniaive), including television and radio appearances, and released their first album in 2013.

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