Clare’s villages will be buzzing with music during the Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann in Ennis, ideal for those escaping the crowds or who are staying out of town.
Kilfenora – one of Ireland’s most famous locations for traditional music – is of course no exception, with a number of its young musicians competing for honours in the All-Ireland championships.
Known variously as the City of the Crosses (visit ancient Kilfenora cathedral) and the home of céilí music, our centuries-old music tradition is on show in the Kilfenora Céilí Band Parlour, a special exhibition space and audio-visual experience in the Burren Centre in Kilfenora Square. Formally opened by Ireland’s President in March 2015, this is the only museum in the world (that we are aware of) dedicated to living musical artists. Among many exhibits is the certificate recording Kilfenora’s Guinness Book of Records win for the largest céilí band ever. Experiencing the Parlour is a must-do for traditional music lovers visiting Clare.
Meanwhile each evening during the Fleadh week, renowned musicians from County Clare and beyond will be playing in Kilfenora pubs. Visiting musicians are welcome to join in.
Linnanes pub will host a traditional session each night (approx 9pm) from Monday 15th to Friday19th, where you can hear many of the distinctive tune sets made famous by the Kilfenora Céilí Band over its 106 year history (so far!) And who knows, sessions may pop up there at the weekend too.
Nagles pub will host sessions on Friday 19th-Sunday21st August (9.30 pm).
Friday – Joe Fitzgerald (accordion, vcls), Des Mulkere (banjo, flute, vcls and stories) and friends
Saturday – Donie Nolan (accordion, vcls), Noel O’Donohue (flute), Pat Marsh (bouzouki)
Sunday – Colin Nea (accordion), Brendan Organ (bouzouki) and friends
Meanwhile, Vaughans pub barn hosts a céilí every Sunday with the Four Courts Céilí Band. Bring your dancing shoes.