Dòchas are a young and dynamic band playing traditional music from the Highlands and Islands of Scotland and Ireland. The five are all music graduates, who individually, and as a band, have toured extensively all over Britain, Ireland, Europe and America. They have an energetic and fresh style which has captured audiences all across the country and they are set for even bigger things with the release of their debut album.
The band have appeared on numerous television programmes, and have performed alongside acts such as Altan, The Liz Docherty Band, The Incredible String Band and Danu. They perform driving tune sets, with fiddle, pipes, whistle, accordion, piano, clàrsach and guitar. These tune sets are mixed with poignant Gaelic songs, all tastefully arranged.
Kathleen Boyle comes from a family steeped in the traditional music of Donegal. She is a talented pianist in addition to her prowess on the accordion. In 1999 she made history as the first graduate of traditional music in Scotland, receiving her degree from the RSAMD where she now lectures. As well as Dochas, Kathleen is a member of the band Tirconnail with whom she has played at home and abroad.
Julie M Fowlis. Originally from North Uist, Julie was brought up in a Gaelic speaking community and was involved in piping and Highland dancing from an early age, both in Uist and later in Ross Shire. Classically trained, Julie studied Oboe with Barbara Rhodes on the BA Applied Music course at the University of Strathclyde, graduating with Honours in 2000. She also completed a years study of Gaelic at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig in Skye. Julie, 24, has performed all over Britain and Europe with Dòchas, and previously Brolum. She has appeared as a solo artist on television programmes such as Tacsi, Fàilte and An t-Urlar Ur and has appeared on Ceòlraidh and Air an Urlar with all female band, Dòchas. Past experience has also included involvement with several commissioned musical works and session work with Belle and Sebastian. A Gaelic speaker, Julie is now based in the Highlands as a musician and Education Development Officer for Fèis Rois. Her main work now lies in traditional music, where she is in demand as a tutor and performer of Gaelic Song, whistles, oboe and pipes.
Carol-Anne MacKay comes from Strathy on Scotland’s north coast. Since starting to play the bagpipes at the age of nine, she has notched up many years of successful performing and competitive piping. She has travelled many parts of the world, playing the pipes, accordion and Scottish small pipes, and has taught extensively at workshops, Fèisean and schools.
Eilidh MacLeod is from the Isle of Skye and has played the clarsach from an early age. She was brought up playing at local concerts and ceilidhs and has since played both solo and with other bands at festivals throughout Europe. She is a keen composer and has been involved with various local commercial recordings, soundtracks for both TV and radio, and commission pieces; one of the most recent being 'An Tarsainn' (The Crossing), a commemorative series of concerts of the Skye/Raasay emigrations to PEI, involving singers Donnie Munro and Anne Martin, and accordionist Blair Douglas amongst others. After graduating from the RSAMD, Eilidh went on to study Gaelic at Sabhal Mor Ostaig and is currently in demand as a performer and tutor of both clarsach and piano.
Eilidh MacLeod hails from the Isle of Skye, and has played the clàrsach from the age of nine, brought up performing at local concerts and cèilidhs, as well as doing the competition circuit. Her sensitive musicianship has made her a sought-after player for both commercial recordings and concert appearances, whilst also regularly teaching clàrsach and keyboard at various Fèisean.
Jenna Reid, started learning the fiddle at the age of nine from the teaching of the late Willie Hunter. This was a huge inspiration to her as fiddler. Whilst studying with Willie Hunter Jenna won the titles of Intermediate and Open winner of 'Shetlands Young Fiddler of the Year Compeition'. On leaving school, she went on to achieve an honours degree in Scottish Music at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama in Glasgow. Since then Jenna's musical career has gone from strength to strength. She continues to play with Shetland band 'Filska' who have toured in throughout Europe, Scandinavia, Canada and the US. Moreover, 'Filska' represented Shetland at the Millenium Celebrations at the Epcot Centre in Disney Land, Florida. 'Filska' have recorded two albums and are currently working towards their third.
As well as traditional music, Jenna has played with 'John Rae's Celtic Feet' a jazz based ensemble with a traditional flavour. In addition to this Jenna has also played with 'Deaf Shepherd' one of Scotlands biggest folk bands. As well as performing, Jenna enjoys teaching and has taught as various workshops and feis.
Martin O'Neill, 24, is the most recent addition to the band, joining the girls in 2004. Martin has won All-Scotland, All-Britain and All-Ireland titles on Bodhrán and is widely recognised as one of today’s leading exponents of this instrument. He graduated in 2002 with an honours degree in Music from Strathclyde University, and since then, has gone on to become one of the most in demand Bodhrán players in the country. An experienced performer, Martin also regularly tours with Brolum and Beneche. He has also performed with the Michael McGoldrick Band, Flook and Deaf Shepherd amongst others. A seasoned session musician, Martin has numerous recording credits to his name as well as a number of TV and Radio appearances at home and abroad.
You can listen to short samples from some of the tracks from this artist using the player below.
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