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The Lonesome Fiddler album features the music of Eddie Kelly and his unique versions of old and familiar tunes. Eddie played the East Galway style and for many years he taught me this music tradition adding his rare touch to jigs, reels and hornpipes alike. A true maestro if ever there was one.

I dedicate The Lonesome Fiddler album to Tom Crean, my dad or daddy as I used to call him, who passed away in 2010.

My dad took the time, year after year to pass down the gift of music to me, eventually enlisting Eddie as my teacher. This sharing of the music with daddy, enkindles some of my lifetime’s best and fondest memories. Now, as an adult and looking back, I have a deeper understanding of his fervor; his pursuit to empower me with the East Galway Irish Music Tradition and to have me play it with accuracy, reverence and tenderness. He left me a beautiful legacy; the music itself and all the happy memories that go with it.
And now I want to pass this music tradition onto you.

Éilís Crean

kct_concerts_kevin_crawfordThe music of East Galway has played a huge part in my own musical trajectory. I grew up in Birmingham, England listening to recordings of Paddy Carty, Joe Burke, The Ballinakill Ceilí Band, Lucy Farr and Paddy Fahy. At the age of twenty-one  I moved to Clare and made it my mission to go on regular foraging trips to Kylebrack, Woodford, Loughrea and Kilnadeema where I was fortunate to play with Conor Tully, Ned Coleman, Padraic Mc Donncha, Mike Rafferty, Anne Conroy Burke and Joe Burke etc.

I love the sweet, lyrical, graceful, cultured, nutritious tunes that these incredible musicians play, each note carefully chosen and beautifully crafted and brought to life through these loyal and faithful disciples, torch bearers for a particular style of music and a particular type of tune.

Nowadays regional styles are far more difficult to define in an age where we have instant access to every Irish musician on the planet. The World Wide Web, mp3 downloads, CD’s, ease of travel etc mean that our influences these days are drawn from a much bigger melting pot. Depending on where you stand this can be either a good or a bad thing. Personally speaking I think it’s hugely beneficial if policed properly. Online resources and archival treasure troves exist that highlight and showcase purveyors of the regional styles that are fundamentally the corner stone of our tradition.

The search for the Holy Grail is made easier however when new recordings come about that pay homage to and acknowledge the contributions made by these musicians from previous generations. Éilís Crean has achieved all of this and more on her debut recording The Lonesome Fiddler. Respect, passion, pride of place and attention to detail are evident throughout this album and indeed throughout every conversation you have with Éilís about the music and musicians of East Galway.

Kevin Crawford

Eddie Kelly

Eddie Kelly

Tom Crean

Tom Crean