John Carty is a leading exponent of the North Connacht style and was awarded the prestigious TG4 Gradam Ceoil Traditional Music of the Year award in 2003. He has released several outstanding solo albums on fiddle and banjo including I Will If I Can, Last Night’s Fun and At It Again. He has also recorded a number of band albums with At the Racket and duet albums including Pathway to the Well and Out of the Ashes with flute-player Matt Molloy, At Complete Ease with fiddle-player Brian Rooney, Settle Out of Court with his daughter, the singer and banjo player Maggie Carty and most recently The Wavy Bow Collection with his son, fiddle player James Carty. He will be joined in this musical exploration by accomplished piper, Michael McGoldrick.
A co-founder of Flook and Lúnasa, and a linchpin of Capercaillie’s line-up since 1998. Manchester-born flute/whistle and uilleann pipes maestro Michael McGoldrick has in recent years performed around the globe with ex-Dire Straits legend Mark Knopfler’s band – including a tour with both Knopfler and Bob Dylan. Despite this lengthy list of stellar collaborations, his true genius lies in his own trailblazing work as a player and composer, brilliantly showcased on his three solo albums to date. On top of all his other projects he also fronts the exhilarating Michael McGoldrick Band.
In 2014 the pair teamed up for a week’s rehearsals before a very special gig, Ceiliúradh, a celebration of Irish culture, in London’s Royal Albert Hall to mark the state visit to London of Irish President Michael D. Higgins. The event was designed as a tribute to thousands of Irish people who have made Britain their home and to showcase the links that exist between Ireland and the U.K. in the artistic and creative domains. During this time together they discovered a mutual admiration for the combination of banjo and pipes. John had heard Mick O’Connor and Tommy McCarthy play regularly in London and Mike, in turn, the Dorans, Rooneys and Carberrys around Manchester. So the seed was sown and during lockdown tunes were exchanged and a repertoire unfolded leading to the creation of At Our Leisure.
For this celebratory tour, John and Michael will explore the exciting and innovative combination of the banjo with uilleann pipes, as well as utilising fiddle, tenor guitar, flute and low whistles. They will be joined on the night by the much sought-after accompanist Matt Griffin on guitar.