We are delighted to feature the doyen of the concertina, Noel Hill. From Caherea, in West Claire, Noel’s parents and grandparents were all concertina players and his playing was particularly influenced by his uncle Padraig A Chnoic (Paddy Hill). The Hill family home was the last house in the area to hold traditional Irish house dances, where musicians were always welcomed. As a youngster, Noel was fortunate in being able to learn from distinguished guests such as Willie Clancy, Paddy Canny, Peter O’Loughlin, Paddy Murphy and Micky Hanrahan. Much of his repertoire today derives from the playing of these great musicians.
He has played professionally since the late 1970s and his discography is extensive. His most celebrated album is Noel Hill and Tony Linane (1979), a collaboration with fiddler Tony Linane, which also features Matt Molloy (flute), Alec Finn (bouzouki and mandocello) and Micheal O’Domhnaill (harmonium).
His most notable recordings are Í gCnoc Na Graí (In Knocknagree – 1985), with renowned accordionist Tony MacMahon, The Irish Concertina One (1988 and voted Irish Folk Album of the Year), Aislingí Céoil (Music of Dreams – 1993), with Tony MacMahon and Iarla Ó Lionáird and The Irish Concertina Two (2005) with Alec Finn, Arty McGlynn, Brian McGrath, Liam O’Connor and Steve Cooney. These albums are all recognized as classics. Noel has just released the long awaited ‘The Irish Concertina 3: Live in New York’ – a completely solo album.
Noel tours extensively and has played throughout Europe, the USA, Canada, China, Hong Kong and Australia. He teaches at his own Noel Hill Irish Concertina Schools in Ireland and the United States and lives with his family in Connemara in the south west Galway Gaeltacht.
Noel will be accompanied on piano this evening, by Fermanagh multi-instrumentalist, Brian McGrath.
Artisan Row brings together four well-known figures from London’s traditional Irish and folk music scene – Elma McElligott, Karen Ryan, Conor Doherty and Pete Quinn. The quartet explores a wide range of traditional tunes and songs – from effervescent reels and Bulgarian horos to quietly dramatic hornpipes and haunting ballads – setting the music in striking and original ways.
Elma McElligott, saxophone and flute, is from Listowel, Co. Kerry. A graduate of University College, Cork, where she studied music under Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin and Mel Mercier, she is a member of The London Lasses. Karen Ryan, banjo, mandola, fiddle and whistle, is a founder member of The London Lasses, with whom she has recorded five albums and performed throughout the UK, Ireland and the US. She is also Director of the Return to Camden Town festival.
Guitarist and singer Conor Doherty, from Derry City, plays traditional and contemporary songs from England, Ireland, Scotland and America. He has performed extensively throughout the UK and Ireland. Liverpool-born pianist Pete Quinn’s performing experience extends from John Cage at the Barbican through jazz fusion at Ronnie Scott’s to traditional Irish music at the BBC Proms. Formerly with The London Lasses, Pete has recorded and performed with some of the greats of traditional Irish music.
Artisan Row released its debut CD, Wild Winds, earlier this year.
“A very fine collection of traditional and newly composed tunes and songs from four well-seasoned and adventurous musicians at the top of their game” – Máirtín O’Connor
Evening Concert – Noel Hill and Brian McGrath / Artisan Row
at Kings Place –
Fri 27th Oct 7.30pm