I grew up in Bessbrook Co Armagh and i came to play music through my brother joe who plays a range of instruments well. He had known some of the older musicians of our area and took the opportunity of recording some of them before they passed on.
They were musicians such as Packie-Joe McKeown ( fiddle player ) , Mickey O'Callaghan ( fiddle player & dance master ), Owney O'Neill
( fiddle player & storyteller ) and the renowned Henry Savage of nearby Beleeks who was an accomplished player before the advent of recordings from America.
I missed the direct influence of these musicians and their local style , as sadly they had all passed away before i was old enough to pay heed. The musicians i did hear wer Packie Carragher, and more often Josephine Keegan of Cullyhanna. Josephine's crisp, clear playing and her love of the music were and are an inspiration to me.
The recordings available at home were also a great influence on me. Players such as Tommy Potts, Kevin Burke,Sean Keane, Sean MaGuire, Des Donnelly, John Doherty,Vincent Griffin and many others kept me listening when i should have been doing other things ! The recordings of Tommy Peoples were perhaps my favourite listening.
You can listen to short samples from some of the tracks from this artist using the player below.
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