23 April 2015

May 2015 - Mensis mirabilis (update)

... A wonderful month - that's what May should be for bluegrass and old-time enthusiasts in this island, and the prospects just keep getting better. Thanks especially to the indefatigable John Nyhan for details of the schedules he has arranged for two excellent groups from the USA: The Petersens and Jeff Scroggins & Colorado.

The BIB reported on 5 February that the Petersens family band from Branson, MO, would be here in May. This time, instead of the full family band, three of the siblings (above left) are coming: Ellen (banjo, vocals), Katie (fiddle, vocals), and Matthew (guitar, bass, vocals). Earlier this year Ellen, described by Bluegrass Today as 'a truly gifted vocalist', made her mark on the major TV talent show 'American Idol'.

L-r: Greg Blake, Jeff Scroggins, Tristan Scroggins

Also, as an unexpected bonus, Jeff Scroggins & Colorado will be in Ireland for five days in the course of a European tour taking in three bluegrass festivals in the Netherlands and Germany. Jeff is a two-time national banjo champion and will have a five-piece band, including Tristan (his son) on mandolin and Greg Blake, award-winning guitarist and singer. The band members who were still to be confirmed when this post was first published are Ellie Hakanson (fiddle) from Portland, OR, and Nate Sabat (bass), now in Boston studying at the prestigious Berklee College of Music.

John has arranged a schedule of concerts for the two groups together, and also the Petersens on their own, as follows. NB: dates that appear to be free on the schedule below are in fact booked for private concerts.

Tues. May 19th: Jeff Scroggins & Colorado and the Petersens, the Grain Store, Ballymaloe, Co. Cork, 8.00 p.m.; tel. 021 4651511 & 021 4651555

Thurs. 21st: The Petersens, Kanturk Library, Kanturk, Co. Cork, 11.00 a.m.; tel. 029 51384
The Petersens, Millstreet Library, Millstreet, Co. Cork, 3.00 p.m.; tel. 029 21970

The Petersens and Jeff Scroggins & Colorado, the Schoolyard Theatre, Charleville, Co. Cork, 8.15 p.m.; tel. 087 2530955, 063 8184

Fri. 22nd: Jeff Scroggins & Colorado and the Petersens, Christ Church, Main St., Innishannon, Co. Cork, 8.00 p.m.; tel. 021 4775361, 087 7921771

Sat. 23rd: A Family Music Day - 'The Families That Play Together'
The Petersens and the Kelleher Family, from Dripsey, Co. Cork (Pat, banjo, guitar, vocals; Lorna, guitar, vocals; Ricky, guitar, bass, vocals, who play a blend of folk, old-time, and bluegrass). Mallow Library, Mallow, Co. Cork, 3.00 p.m.
Christ Church Church of Ireland, Ballyhooly Castle Grounds, Ballyhooly, Co. Cork, 8.00 p.m.; tel. 086 2659496

Sun. 24th: The Petersens, St Mary's Church of Ireland, Dungarvan, Co. Waterford, 3.00 p.m.; concert in aid of Hope Foundation and Church Repair Fund; tel. 087 225 7983

Tues. 26th: 'Bluegrass Meets Trad' concert: The Petersens and Jamie Kirby (tenor bjo) and Daniel Ahern (tenor bjo, guitar), the Mill Bar, Sixmilebridge, Co. Clare; tel. 086 8464509 (A Sixmilebridge Folk Club presentation)

Thanks to John for arranging this schedule as part of what we know will be a very busy month for him, and there's every likelihood it will also be an outstanding month for fans of our music.

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