Irish Instrumental Band Lunasa Plays Liams
By: iO staff, March 19, 2012
- Traditional Irish instrumental band Lunasa on tour in 2009. The award-winning band will play at Liam Maguire's in Falmouth as part of its current US tour.
Irish traditional music ensemble Lúnasa will perform at Liam Maguire’s Irish Pub & Restaurant in Falmouth on Tuesday, March 20 as part of its US tour. Joining the band is celebrated guitarist Ed Boyd of Flook, Kate Rusby and Cara Dillon renown.
Lúnasa released its seventh album Lá Nua (Irish for “new day”) in 2010, the album debut release on the band's own label, Lúnasa Records and recorded on location at the ancient pagan settlement of Bavan Co. Louth.
If you go...
Tuesday, March 20 at 8 PM
Liam Maguire's Irish Pub
273 Main Street, Falmouth
Widely known for original compositions and double bass-driven rhythms, Lúnasa upholds the traditional instrumentation of pipes, fiddle and flute. Lúnasa was always conceived as an instrumental outfit, a decision which some initially thought would put them at a disadvantage. But artistically, critically, and commercially, it proved to be a boon, as the band's skill and musicality quickly disarmed naysayers.
Of the band, legendary Irish fiddler Kevin Burke says, "Maintaining the unique, intimate qualities of a musical tradition while at the same time meeting and fulfilling the demands of the contemporary music world is a difficult juxtaposition to achieve, yet Lúnasa have managed to accomplish exactly that."
Formed in 1996, Lúnasa is composed of Kevin Crawford (flutes, low whistles and tin whistles), Trevor Hutchinson (double bass), Ed Boyd (guitar), Seán Smyth (fiddle and low whistle) and Cillian Vallely (uilleann pipes and low whistles).
What Lúnasa has accomplished in their now decade-plus career has deep precedent in jazz and progressive bluegrass, making them entirely unique in Celtic circles.
Simply put, Lúnasa welds the ancient soul of traditional instrumental Irish music to a new rhythmic framework, one which breaks down the barrier between soloist and accompanist and creates a dynamic polyphony that preserves the dignity of their sources while fiercely thrusting them into the modern age.
The band is known for its energetic live performances and memorable performances with Mary Chapin Carpenter, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Rosanne Cash, and Billy Bragg, among others. Early on in their career wildly successful US and Australian tours, acclaimed performances at Glasgow's Celtic Connections festival, and the Coeur Miroir award at the Quebec City Summer festival in 2003 confirmed the band's reputation as masters of modern Irish music.
The band was one of the featured collaborators on Natalie Merchant's 2010 album Leave Your Sleep. Lúnasa joined Natalie on stage to close her headline set at the world famous Cambridge Folk Festival (UK). The following night the band were given the honour of closing the festival and were named by The Independent as a festival highlight.