"The Leitrim Influence” Featuring Fionnuala Maxwell (vocal), Eleanor Smith (vocal/concertina), Clare Bohan (fiddle), John McCartin (guitar) and Liam Cryan (Bodhrán)
In this exploration of traditional song, Fionnuala is accompanied by a younger singer, whom Fionnuala has influenced through her teaching. The songs in this wonderful concert have been handed down and learned over generations and are to be found in community archives, the Dúchas collection and other online collections.
Livestreaming on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube
Leitrim traditional singer/songwriter, Fionnuala Maxwell is a well-known voice within the Irish traditional singing fraternity. Her years of partaking in various singing gatherings, festivals, Fleadhanna and workshops have seen her acquire a broad range of songs, being influenced by people such as Rosie Stewart, Paddy Berry, Niamh Parsons and the late Paddy Tunney. Her pride in being Leitrim born and bred is most evident in her repertoire and it is from the experiences of this rural upbringing that she draws inspiration for many of her self-penned ballads.Fionnuala is a multi-medallist and has recorded two albums of songs, one in conjunction with her young students in Carrick Trad singing class and she has also featured on various recordings, including the Leitrim Equation album with Dervish. Her sense of connectedness to her roots and her commitment to preserving and promoting the songs of her locality are evident in the work she has done and continues to carry out as a researcher and “passer-on” of the tradition. Recent collaborations with various artists, including dancer Edwina Guckian and musician Brian Mostyn on The Modern Day Mummers project and with visual artist and ceramicist Kate-Murtagh Sheridan as part of a Co-Create venture have allowed her to reflect on her singing journey and explore some diverse approaches in her quest to make the tradition more accessible and relevant.
Eleanor Smith is from Carrick on Shannon currently studying in National University of Ireland Galway. She started singing lessons with Fionnuala Maxwell a number of years ago upstairs in Cryans Teach Ceoil and shortly after joined Carrick Trad where she began lessons on concertina. Since then, she has competed in multiple Fleadh Cheoils as a singer and concertina player and also takes part in Carrick Trad Ceilí Band and Grupa Cheoil. Eleanor and four other girls from St Marys Kiltoghert GAA Club, won the All Ireland Scór na nÓg competition in 2019 in the Ballad Group category. She loves going to various county, regional and All-Ireland fleadhs and learning from other musicians and singers, adapting her technique and broadening her repertoire. Eleanor is 19 years old.