Impossibly in demand in the studio and on the road, immensely talented and blessed with an acute ear, a wicked sense of rhythm and seemingly endless stream of magic in his playing, composing, performing and producing, Ireland’s John Doyle has solidly establishing himself as one of the most versatile, creative and prolific voices in folk and traditional Irish music. On Wednesday, Aug. 28, Doyle comes to Maine to perform at the historic Opera House in Boothbay Harbor. He will be appearing alongside Mick McAuley.
In 1994 John Doyle brought his brilliant and innovative guitar stylings to the nascent Irish super-group Solas, which soon took the folk and Celtic music worlds by storm. In the years since going out on his own, John has recorded solo albums, including Wayward Son, which The Irish Edition hailed as “a contender for Album of the Year;” and has become a highly sought-after accompanist and session player for the likes of Joan Baez, Eileen Ivers, Tim O’Brien, Linda Thompson, Seamus Egan, Alison Brown and Kate Rusby; and has developed compelling duo performances, first with fiddler Liz Carroll and more recently with Solas’ co-founding vocalist Karan Casey and now with Mick McAuley.
From a musical family in Dublin, John was 16 when he went on the road with Chanting House, a group which he formed with Susan McKeown and which eventually included such great players as Seamus Egan, Eileen Ivers, Donogh Hennessy, and Brian Doyle. The highly influential Solas followed, its success due in no small part to John’s powerful rhythmic guitar. As a member of Solas, John performed internationally to sold out audiences and appeared on many television and radio programs, including NBC’s The Today Show, A Prairie Home Companion, Mountain Stage, E-Town and World Cafe. As part of that critically acclaimed group, he also received three NAIRD awards and a Grammy nomination.
John has appeared on soundtracks for feature films “The Brothers McMullan and Soldier,” as well as PBS’s “Out of Ireland.” He composed the music for the film “Uncle Robert’s Footsteps” and the play “Down the Flats.”
Mick McAuley is an Irish musician, composer and songwriter who has recorded and toured internationally for many years. While his music is rooted firmly in the Irish tradition, he has been part of a movement which continues to push the musical boundaries of that tradition to bring Irish music to a wider and more diverse audience around the world. As a long-time member of the Irish-American ensemble SOLAS, he has recorded and toured nine albums with them and received widespread international acclaim. The Boston Herald hailed SOLAS as "the best Irish traditional band in the world." A multi-instrumentalist, Mick plays accordion, melodeon, concertina, whistles and guitar.
Tickets are currently on sale for this late summer evening of Irish-inspired music. Advance discounted tickets are $25 and available by calling the box office at 207-633-5159. The Opera House is located at 86 Townsend Avenue, Boothbay Harbor. Regular tickets are $30 and available online at boothbayoperahouse.com and on the day of the performance. Doors for seating open at 7 p.m., music begins at 7:30.