Sept. 14-17

Muskegon,
Michigan

2017 Entertainment

We Banjo 3

Literally taking both sides of the Atlantic by storm and carving a reputation as one of the world’s most imaginative ensembles, We Banjo 3 has claimed the # 1 position in Billboard’s World Music charts; top honours from the Irish Music Rights Organization (IMRO); and the distinction of entertaining an American president, an Irish Prime Minister, and members of the U.S. Congress at the annual “Friends of Ireland” luncheon on Capitol Hill. All the way from Galway, Ireland, We Banjo 3 plays a blend of traditional Irish, old time, and bluegrass music they call “Celt Grass.”

Lúnasa

This band is internationally acknowledged as being the finest traditional Irish instrumental outfit of recent times. They are renowned for their stunning shows, honed by superb musicianship and a constant touring cycle. Lunasa has performed over 1,500 shows across 36 countries since the band formed in 1997.

Cara Dillon

Cara possesses a rare and unique voice that has been lauded since her very beginnings: winning the All Ireland singing trophy at only 14 years old. Recent years have seen her return wholeheartedly to her Irish roots, creating fresh interpretations of traditional standards with stunning results. Whether she’s singing her native traditional songs of lost love and emigration or original compositions, you will be hard pressed to find a more emotive and captivating performer.

The Elders

The Elders were founded in 1998 by six individuals with a passion for music rooted in Americana and Celtic folk rock. From the beginning, their ability to bring together the art of storytelling, with elements both musically progressive and rooted in tradition, has won them a broad international fan base.

Old Blind Dogs

A Scottish musical group featuring traditional Scottish folk and Celtic music, Old Blind Dogs were named “Folk Band of the Year” at the Scots Trad Music Awards. Also in 2004, Jim Malcolm was named Songwriter of the Year. In 2001, the UK’s Association of Independent Music selected their album Fit? as a finalist for the Celtic Album of the Year award. The band has toured extensively, performing in Britain, the USA, Denmark, Germany, Poland, Spain, Italy, and Russia.

Goitse

This multi-award-winning quintet was forged in the white-hot creative crucible of Limerick University’s Irish World Academy. Recently crowned Live Ireland’s Trad Group of the Year and Chicago Irish American News’ Group of the Year, they have made a name for themselves as one of the most sought after bands amongst connoisseurs of Irish Traditional music.

Ten Strings and a Goatskin

Members of this bilingual band hailing from Prince Edward Island, Canada are multiple nominees for the 2013 Canadian Folk Music Awards, East Coast Music Awards, and Music PEI Awards. Together, they form a trad/folk/fusion trio.

Danny Burns

Danny has been touring since the age of 17, learning his craft on the road while playing and living in New York, Nashville, New Orleans and Chicago. He has extensive experience on the European and Scandinavian circuits. Burns’ influences not only come from his traditional upbringing, but also from legendary singer-songwriters like John Martyn, Van Morrison, Richard Thompson, and Christy Moore.

Dave Curley

A multi-instrumentalist, singer, and dancer from Corofin, Co. Galway, Dave is no stranger to the festival. While his accolades are endless, Dave’s best known in our community for being a member of award-winning bands Slide and Runa. His most recent record, “A Brand New Day,” marks a new beginning in his musical career and showcases his vocals and writing style, which features a contemporary sensibility rooted in tradition.

The Moxie Strings

The Moxie Strings is the electrifying combination of fiddler Diana Ladio and electric cellist Alison Lynn. Their ear-catching originals and dance-worthy traditional tunes have made the Moxie Strings one of Michigan’s most promising and well-loved instrumental acts.

Seamus Kennedy

A fan favorite of the Michigan Irish Music Festival, Seamus’ trademark is his ongoing interaction with the audiences. From the moment he steps on the stage, he starts talking with the audience – and encourages them to talk back! He is quick with a quip and likes nothing better than to discover someone in the audience is similarly inclined. Fast-paced humor is very much a part of what Seamus does, whether he’s telling a series of rapid-fire jokes or launching into a lyrical parody.

Blackthorn

Traditional songs of emigration, lively jigs and reels, and ancient airs combine with Ireland’s best contemporary songs for a musical experience that captures the history and legend of Ireland. Each member of the band plays multiple instruments, including the wooden flute, accordion, tin whistle, five string banjo, cittern, bones, and more. These instruments complement the lead vocal of Belfast native Richard McMullan and the band’s tight blend of five-part harmony. Based in Detroit, Blackthorn has played throughout the Great Lakes region since 1984.

Kennedy’s Kitchen

Kennedy’s Kitchen has been making Irish music together since 1998, averaging about 80 shows per year and playing everything from backyard parties and weddings to pubs, concert halls, and national festivals. They are family and friends, gathering every Thursday evening for laughter and music rooted in traditional Irish music, jigs, reels, hornpipes, stories, and songs – adding their own compositions along the way.

Tallymoore

Tallymoore is a contemporary Irish Folk band from Milwaukee that performs a range of Irish and Scottish folk tunes, ballads, reels, and classic pub songs. The group also incorporates acoustic and vocal material from broader Celtic, traditional country, bluegrass, and Americana sources. Established in 2012, Tallymoore has made appearances at major Irish music festivals across the United States, including Milwaukee, Kansas City, Syracuse, and Indianapolis. Tallymoore released their second full-length album “Drive” in March of 2016.

Stone Clover

Stone Clover was literally born above an Irish Pub in downtown Detroit. Front man Pauly Brady formed the band in 2009 while living above the pub his grandparents built, the Old Shillelagh. Stone Clover’s original approach to songwriting is a melding of pub-style tunes mixed with aspects of rock, punk, gypsy, folk, and Americana. They affectionately call this style of their own “Paddy Slag,” as it clearly comes from Irish tradition but has so many other influences as well.

The Conklin Ceili Band

Formed in 1997 after a weekend of jamming, chatting, and laughing, the Conklin Ceili Band has established itself as one of West Michigan’s most beloved purveyors of Celtic and Irish-American music with two studio albums under its belt. The band performs arrangements that combine trad tunes and songs in ways that audiences may not have heard before. Ultimately, Conklin Ceili performs with the goal of entertaining audiences and bringing the history of Ireland to life.

Brother Crowe

Hailing from Detroit, Brother Crowe has hammered through over 100 shows in a year, sometimes playing three gigs in a day. The band consists of two brothers, Derek (vocals/harmonica/bodhran) and Paul (guitars/banjo/vocals). Brother Crowe’s musical style hones in on country/indie-folk roots that still possess a somewhat traditional Celtic sound.

Crossbow

From a casual jam session at Grand Valley State University (GVSU) to becoming a popular favorite at Celtic festivals across the Midwest, CrossBow has been humbled and excited by every turn on their musical journey.

Blarney Castle

Named after the famous Irish castle, the Kalamazoo band Blarney Castle is quickly becoming a fixture in Southwest Michigan since their origin in early 2015. The six members of Blarney Castle met while studying music at Western Michigan University and formed the band out of a mutual love for traditional and folk music. Their music combines the technicality of Western classicism with the rich folk music heritages of Ireland and Scotland and a progressive energy that appeals to audiences of all ages.

Max & Ruth Bloomquist ft. Carl Webb

Ruth and Max celebrate 40 years of performing their style of Acoustic Americana, with roots in folk, bluegrass, and traditional country music. The pair’s 2010 CD release, Turn Back a Page, reached No. 5 on the Folk DJ Airplay Chart with 4 songs in the top 100 for that year. The pair has toured in southern France nearly every year since 2008. A live CD was released in 2012 and a Christmas EP in 2015.

Peat in the Creel

Peat in the Creel draws from Irish traditional music roots, at times nourished by the heritage of Scotland and broader world influences, to bring forth a range of energetic dance tunes, spirited folk songs, and peaceful melodies. The group’s namesake, a phrase inspired by a popular Scottish song lyric which literally wishes a basket laden with peat for fuel, metaphorically toasts to a bountiful future. Founded in 2011, the band is cut from the turf of West Michigan and enjoys performing throughout the region.

Uneven Ground

Uneven Ground is a four-piece traditional Celtic band blending vocals with instrumentals to bring their listeners on a unique musical journey. “Grounded” in the roots of traditional Irish music, Uneven Ground presents a blend of songs molded from hundreds of pub tunes from around the Celtic region. By teaching the history of their music mixed with their nonsensical humor, each performance offers the listener an escape from the busyness of life.

 

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Single Day, and Four Day Passes Available