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FullSet Irish Band brings Ireland to Shepherdstown

By Staff | Feb 15, 2013

Looking for a rare evening of fine Irish music? Then look no more, because on Friday, Feb. 22, Shepherdstown Music and Dance and the Performing Arts Series at Shepherd will be presenting one of the best traditional bands to come out of Ireland in recent years, FullSet.

Made up of six musicians in their 20s, FullSet plays traditional Irish tunes with the energy of youth. Named New Group of the Year at the 2012 Live Ireland Music Awards, FullSet has received critical acclaim for their debut release, Live at Liberty, earning comparisons to supergroups Altan and Danu by Irish Music Magazine. Raised in the Irish folk tradition, many of the members of the band have been playing together since their teens. Members include a three-time All-Ireland fiddle champion, an uilleann piper who has won the All-Ireland title six times and a button accordionist with several solo All-Ireland titles on accordion and melodeon, as well as an accomplished flute player, singer and guitar player.

The concert takes place on Friday, Feb. 22 at 8 p.m. at the Shepherd University Frank Performing Arts Center. Tickets are $18 adults, $15 seniors and Shepherd faculty, $12 SMaD members, $8 children/students. Shepherd University students get in free with their Rambler ID.

For more information call (304)263-2531 or see the web page at smad.us/concerts. Tickets may be purchased in advance at the Shepherd University Bookstore by calling 304-876-5219; online at www.shepherdbook.com, or in person with the Bookstore on the ground level of the Shepherd Student Center (210 N. King Street).

All accomplished young musicians in their own right, FullSet create a stunning and unique sound that is full of energy and innovation, whilst all the time remaining true to their traditional roots. Having received critical acclaim for their debut release, “Notes At Liberty”, FullSet are quickly becoming one of the most well known bands in the Irish music scene today. In October 2011 they were honored by being announced as the winners of the RT/RAAP Breakthrough Annual Music Bursary Award. This has given the group huge exposure and the opportunity to begin work on a second album.

With his smooth and free flowing style of fiddle playing, Michael Harrison creates a distinctive sound using original and colourful techniques. Chris McMullan is known for his complete use of the uilleann pipes and employs his skills and mastery of this instrument in all pieces arranged by FullSet. Talented musician, Janine Redmond, on button accordion maintains a rich traditional style that is becoming ever so rare in traditional music today. Eamonn Moloney on bodhrn and Andy Meaney on guitar, effortlessly blend the music together with a sensitive yet driving accompaniment section. The emotive singing style of Teresa Horgan completes the ensemble and is guaranteed to captivate audiences of every generation.

Tipperary man, Michael Harrison, a grandson of well known fiddle player Aggie Whyte, is at the forefront of young Irish fiddle players. Taught by Brendan Larrissey of trad group Arcady, Michael has developed a fluent and free flowing style of playing highly influenced by the tradition of East Galway. He is a three time All-Ireland fiddle champion in both underage and senior competitions. He has toured extensively around the world visiting Japan (EXPO) China, Australia, France, Germany, Slovenia, Britain and America and has performed with acclaimed musicians such as Sen O’S (Ceoiltir Chualann) and Brendan McGlinchey. He has made several radio and television appearances including Geantra with Gerry “Banjo” O’Connor (Four Men & a Dog), Arty McGlynn and Ned Kelly.

Chris McMullan is an exceptionally gifted uilleann piper and whistle player from the town of Strabane in Co. Tyrone. He began playing at age 8, under the tutorship of Noel Devine and was influenced by the piping of Seamus Ennis, Patsy Touhy and John McSherry. At the age of twelve he became a member of the famous Armagh Pipers club where he studied under Tiarnan O Duinnchin. Over the years he has won multiple awards at the All Ireland Fleadh Cheoil run by Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eirann. In 2009 he graduated with his degree in music from the University of Ulster and since then has performed widely and has been a featured soloist at the world-renowned Willy Clancy Festival in Co. Clare.

Janine Redmond, native to Dublin, is one of Ireland’s most dynamic young button accordion players. Under the tuition of Sligo born John Regan and well-known flute player June McCormack, she has achieved numerous solo All-Ireland titles in both accordion and melodeon. Having graduated from St. Patrick’s College of Education in Irish and Music she has attained a rich traditional style influenced by luminaries such as Joe Burke. Janine has also toured extensively throughout America, Latvia, China, Japan, Poland, France and Australia. She has performed with the renowned music and dance group Br Bor in Cashel, Co. Tipperary and was also a featured artist on RTE’s Bloom of Youth programme in 2008.

Hailing from the village of Newport in Co. Tipperary, Eamonn Molone is one of Ireland’s finest young flute & bodhrn players. In 2008 he graduated from the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance at the University of Limerick where he studied under the tutelage of Prof. Michel Suilleabhin, Niall Keegan, Sandra Joyce and many others. Since then Eamonn has performed extensively on the Irish music circuit touring Europe, America and Asia and has been lucky enough to share the stage with some of Ireland’s finest exponents of traditional music including The Chieftains, Sharon Shannon, Zoe Conway and Cathy Jordan. He is a founding member and flute player with the Five Counties Cil Band and has also performed and toured with several different music and dance productions such as the Irish Harp Orchestra and Celtic Legends.

Andrew Meeney from Rathmines Co. Dublin, is an extremely talented young guitar player. Primarily self-taught, Andrew has acquired a powerful rhythmic style of playing. He has become well-known on the session circuit around Ireland by playing at many festivals and featuring on radio broadcasts such as RTE’s Cil House, presented by Kieran Hanrahan. Having studied music in D.I.T. Andrew has gone on to perform on the world stage with Fergal O’Murchu’s widely acclaimed music and dance show “Rags”. He has also performed at “The World Fleadh” and was an artist at “Bal De Europe” in France. Andrew cites, among others, Steve Cooney, Jim Murray, Alec Finn and Andy Irvine as his main influences.

The concert is the sixth program in Shepherdstown Music and Dance’s International Concert Series this season, which celebrates music from the Americas and beyond with established masters and some of the finest proponents of the next generation of traditional music. For more information on the series, see the web page at smad.us.

For more information on the band, see their website .