Celebrating the Sounds of St. Patrick's Day

By Annie Shreffler

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March 12, 2012


Listen to the entire Chieftains and The Low Anthem performance:


BOSTON — During a world tour celebrating 50 years as one of the most celebrated traditional Irish bands in history, The Chieftains stopped by WGBH's Fraser Studio to share some tunes and have a few beers with fans and members of the WGBH Celtic Club.

Accompanying the legendary group were several other talents, including bluegrass icons Jeff White and Deanie Richardson, celebrated Scottish vocalist Alyth McCormack and the Rhode Island-based band Low Anthem, who also collaborated with The Chieftains on their new album Voice of Ages.

During the performance, Paddy Moloney of the Chieftans shared a recorded phone call he had with Irish-American astronaut Cady Coleman, currently serving on the International Space Station. To celebrate St. Patrick's Day, Coleman played a tune for Paddy on a pennywhistle he had loaned her to take along some Irish tradition into space.

Before the last number for the evening, Moloney called out for anyone to join in, saying "If you have a mouth organ or you just want to stand on your head, this is your big moment."  Each musician took a solo moment in which to express their own version of the melody, and Tommy McCarthy, co-owner of Somerville pub The Burren, joined in to show he can turn a phrase on his fiddle.

You haven't missed your chance to hear live Irish music — both new and traditional — in Boston this week. Tickets are still available for A St. Patrick's Day Celtic Sojourn, appearing at the Zeiterion Theater in New Bedford on March 17 and at the Sanders Theaters in Cambridge on March 24. Performers include Susan McKeown, The Bee Eaters, Jeremy Kittel, Michael Brunnock and many more.

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