2015 Festival Entertainment
Stone Clover spins high energy antics into the traditional world of Irish music. Not to be labeled as merely an Irish band the group draws influence from many different styles of music including, punk, metal, jazz, and folk. They are best known for their original songs, but are just as comfortable playing traditional songs with their own arrangements. The band is loved by kids of all ages, 1-100. Pull up a pint and be ready for some fun!
Nessa is a Detroit area ensemble led by flutist/vocalist Kelly McDermott. Ms. McDermott’s musical journey started with three degrees in flute performance, two of them advanced degrees from Temple University in Philadelphia. She later worked for more than a decade around the east coast as an orchestral and chamber musician. This brand new group combines classical, jazz, and Celtic influences with accents of world music and soul. The music reflects Ms. McDermott’s deep passion for rediscovering, and rearranging old Celtic and European folk songs, along with clever, soulful arrangements of Classical themes. Nessa is a fun, funky ensemble with depth and color that includes some of Southeastern Michigan’s finest players.
The Tosspints’ style of music has been influenced by 3 lifetimes of living through the school of hard knocks, brought to bear from war, loss, degradation, and hard drinking. A band created entirely by a family who has had to make it through life the hard way and use their experience to create songs about the more distressed side of being human. Their fast paced no nonsense stage show drives songs straight into the audience one after the other, pushing their own style of up tempo minor chord melodies out with the highest possible energy level.
Their powerful stage presence and unending barrage of music from the beginning of their set to the end of the dark, yet high energy show has earned them spots on stage with iconic underground rock heroes such as The Dropkick Murphys, The Tossers, Murder by death, The Young Dubliners, The Goddamn Gallows, Skinny Lister and Flatfoot 56, as well as earned festival showcases from The Michigan Irish Music Festival, 2013 CBGB’s Festival in New York City, and the George Killians Irish Red Ruckus in Boston, MA. Their songwriting skills have been recognized in the 2011 John Lennon Songwriting Contest where they earned a finalist position and their powerful fan support has earned them a spot on the 2012 Vans Warped Tour Ernie Ball Stage and Alternative Press Magazine Detroit’s Band of the Month for December 2012.
Dragon Wagon is Michigan Roots music at its finest! Each performance is built on originality, fun, and expert musicianship, quickly making the band one of Michigan’s premier bluegrass outfits. Dragon Wagon’s honest sound and genuine crowd connection never disappoint, and appeal to all audiences. The combination of mandolin, fiddle, banjo, guitar, bass, and drums guarantees an infectious energy that gets every crowd dancing! The band formed in 2008, and is now based in Ann Arbor, MI.
Hailing from County Saginaw in the State of Michigan, Equinox draws its inspiration from the music of Ireland and Scotland. Playing the traditional instruments: fiddle, whistles, concertina, bodhran, flute, bagpipes, guitar, bass, drums and voice, yet, with their own unique arrangements, Equinox transforms those familiar jigs, reels, strathspeys and hornpipes into reverent music that is dynamic and contemporary.
The Band currently features Vern Pococke on low whistle, drums and vocals, Jean Marie Learman on flute, whistle, concertina and vocals, Leslie Gregory on fiddle, and Kathy Morris on guitar, bodhran, whistle and vocals. Joining Equinox on Scottish Bagpipes is Dennis Lowe. They also have many diverse visual artists join their performances to create a musical experience for the eyes as well as the ears.
Beginning nearly twenty years ago as an amateur trio sharing Irish Pub songs at social gatherings, Equinox soon added more experienced musicians and developed an ear for the Celtic Revival Bands of the 60’s and 70’s. Their repertoire grew from Danny Boy and Whiskey in the Jar to include works by O’ Carolan, the Chieftains, and Brian McNeill. They drew more upon the musical stylings of the bands that they listened to in their youth like the Byrds, Steeleye Span, Fairport Convention and Led Zeppelin. As a result, patrons are not only invigorated by the foot-stomping music of the Celtic Genre but are also pleasantly surprised with their rich and sophisticated arrangements which take this music far beyond its traditional roots.
In 2009, The Waxies were named “Best Celtic Rock Band in Michigan” at the Ionia Free Fair Celtic Battle of the Bands (judged by audience enthusiasm and hosted by Waxies godfather Liam the XL Leprechaun). They released their first studio album, In Pursuit of Dicey Riley, later that year and were nominated for a Jammy Award from WYCE in 2010. And in 2011, voters from all over Michigan awarded The Waxies a Shammy Award for “Favorite Irish Rock Act in Michigan”.
Saline Fiddlers Philharmonic
A 21-piece string ensemble featured at over 80 performances annually, Fiddlers ReStrung proudly displays a diverse arrangement of styles. American Bluegrass, Celtic fiddle, popular folk, Appalachian Step-dancing, Progressive Acoustic, and more are all brought forward with a crisp, enterprising flair. They engage the audience with energy and witty charm, advocating a message of spontaneous enthusiasm born of a genuine live performance.
ReStrung consists of students at Saline High School, all of whom share in producing a unique ensemble truly their own. Working alongside leadership, students craft their own arrangements and help make organizational decisions. This collaborative ownership grants ReStrung an authentic creative edge that is clearly visible from the striking energy they portray on stage. Students are chosen based not only on musical talent, but personal maturity as well. They balance a demanding performance schedule while maintaining high standards in other school activities, sports, and academics.
Founded in early 2010, The Corktown Popes set out to create something familiar, yet unique. We began by seeking out talented musicians with a penchant for energetic live performances and a strong Caledonian soul. We have found them. We’re not a celtic band, we’re not a rock band, but we’ve been accused of both. In addition, we’ve just won the Detroit Music Award’s Outstanding World Music Artist award for 2014!
Hailing from Detroit—and damn proud of it—Brother Crowe has hammered through over 100 shows in a year, sometimes playing three gigs in a day. But now is their time to shine.
The band consists of two brothers, Derek (vocals/harmonica/mandolin) and Paul (guitars/vocals/piano). Brother Crowe’s purpose, is honing in on an New Country/Indie Folk sound that still possesses a somewhat traditional Americana style.
Paul, who along with his brother was influenced by his father’s love of Folk music, is dubbed Brother Crowes’ main songwriter. The duo works on music together, jamming out the skeletons of tunes until they’re finished.
“Derek will then fine tune some of the melodies and the lyrics a little bit, “Paul says. “He’s the one singing them. There are a few things that he’ll truncate or maybe he’ll change a phrase up, add a half verse or a full verse from what I originally wrote. The songs definitely go through an element where we pound them into shape.”
Peat in the Creel
Traditional and some non traditional Celtic music ranging from beautiful sweet and somber songs and upbeat tunes, to classic rock bits cleverly peppered in!
Roane specializes in Celtic, Maritime, and American folk music. Our three enchanting lassies will inspire a love for all things Celtic as they raise their voices in harmony embracing the spirit of the their ancestors. Our Laddie plays several instruments and sings the foot-stomping shanties of the sea. Journey back in time with us as we share our passion for the sea and the ancient lands of olde!
The Irish Dance Company of Lansing has promoted Irish music and dance for children in the Mid-Michigan area since 1992. Dancers from age 5 to 18 learn traditional steps and dances, and help select music and create choreography to a variety of traditional to contemporary Celtic tunes.Directed by Betsy McCartney Banghart and Meghan McCartney Scott.
The Commonwealth Dance Collective is an ensemble of Michigan dancers who perform many styles of stepdances including Irish, Appalachian, English, Canadian, American tap, historic routines and original choreography. The members of the group delight in capturing the spirits of the past and the present with equal enthusiasm and sharing the collective joy of many cultures through dance.
The Tartan and Thistle Scottish Country Dancers meet weekly in the Ann Arbor to dance traditional jigs, reels and Strathspeys – the social dances of Scotland – while listening to live music and enjoying each other’s company. Dancers of all ages and skill levels are welcome.
Damhsa Ulsce Ban Mor is an Irish language phrase that means Dance Grand Rapids. It is a group of enthusiastic dancers who dance weekly in Grand Rapids and teach ceili and set dancing at the SCF and Milwaukee Irish Fest.
The Ann Arbor Celtic Harpers play Celtic music on folk harps, also called Celtic or Lever Harps. They meet periodically, sponsor concerts and workshop, and occasionally perform. Led by Carol Kappus, a harper and singer specializing in the music of Scotland.
The Dancin’ with Delia Irish Dance School has been offering Irish dance since 2006. They currently offer group and private lessons in Clinton Township, Saline, Rochester and Farmington Hills.
Celtic Jam is made up of local musicians from SE Michigan who play Irish and Scottish traditional music on acoustic instruments, such as fiddle, banjo, harp, uilleann pipes, concertina, bodhran, guitar, string bass, and penny whistle.
Ren’ee Ginell hosts the Dance stage for the SCF and will teach a Cape Breton stepdance workshop in the afternoon.
Morris dancing is a form of ritual folkdance that originates in England and dates back to at least the 15th century. The Ann Arbor Morris group was founded in 1976 and is part of the Ann Arbor Community of Traditional Music and Dance. Morris dancers traditionally dress in white, wear bells tied to their shins, and dance to live music played on instruments such as the accordion, penny whistle, or fiddle.
Based in Ann Arbor, Nutshell is a Celtic roots band whose repertoire ranges from high energy traditional jigs and reels, to expressive airs and songs with beautiful harmonies. Nutshell will feature Linda Teaman on lead vocals and bodhran, Tom Voiles on flute, whistle, and vocals, and John Lloyd on guitar.
Annika Socolofsky and Christine Hedden (fiddles) and Nadine Dyskant-Miller (flute) draw their roots from a variety of backgrounds: Irish, Scottish, Quebecois, and New England folk music. Together, they can be seen almost every Saturday morning at the Ann Arbor Farmer’s Market.