Seven-time all-Ireland champion John Whelan is one of the world’s best living Irish button accordion players. John was raised in the London Irish music scene of the 1970s, and learned his craft from legends Lucy Farr, Roger Sherlock, Paddy Taylor, Mick O’Connor and his teacher Brendan Mulkaire. John moved to the US in 1980 and has been inspiring Celtic musicians and fans ever since. He has toured and recorded extensively with many artists – ranging from Celtic music superstars such as Riverdance fiddler Eileen Ivers, to musicians as diverse as country star Kathy Mattea and the Sirius String Quartet. Along with his All-Ireland Championships, he was twice awarded Musician of the Year from the Irish Music Association. He’s recorded over 15 CDs and isn’t stopping yet.
Originally born in London to Irish parents, Katie Murray moved to County Mayo at age 10 and quickly immersed herself in the South Sligo music scene, which highly influenced her style of fiddle playing. Under the guidance of legendary flute and fiddle player Peter Horan, Katie collected the repertoire of the area and cultivated a rhythmic style of playing synonymous with the region. During her years at Trinity College Dublin, she taught and played in sessions and ceilis across the country. Following several years in Manchester, England, Katie moved to New Haven, Connecticut in 2015 where she now works as a research scientist. Katie can be regularly found playing in Irish music sessions, festivals and ceilis throughout New England.
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