Music and Story from the Courts, Castles, and Kitchens of Ireland…

Tale of the Gael, Basel, 2010

Back row: Brendan Wade, Paul Dooley, Catherine Rhatigan, Dave Aebli, front row: Prannie Rhatigan  Basel, 2010

Tale of the Gael started with three Sligo musicians in 1996 and has grown in a lot of ways since then…
These days the group is best described as a collection of prolific musicians, each with his or her own musical profile and background, who  regularly join forces  to work on and perform specific Irish music projects and concerts.  These can be in Ireland or abroad, but wherever they are, and whatever they involve, the entire group devotes an enormous amount of energy and attention to the work in hand, generally has a great time performing it.

At the core of the repertoire is the music of the Irish harp, many of the concerts featuring both the older metal-strung harp and the gut strung Irish harp.  A feature of the group is often the unusual sound of the metal strings and the gut/nylon strings when the two instruments are played together. Harp and double bass together produce a wonderfully mellow sound, and harp and pipes are for many people, the classic Irish sound. It’s all in the mix, with whistle, flute, bodhran, fiddle and bouzouki as well!

In recent years, Tale of the Gael has earned a reputation for presentations that insert an historical theme, anecdote, or poetry into the repertoire, giving the audience a context for a fuller appreciation of how,  for generations, music in Ireland reflected and expressed events in our history both big and small:  from rebellion, to unrequited love, to being stony broke…

Catherine, Margaret, and Emer with piper Alan Roberts, Sligo 1999

Working like this, everything is always new…

Described  as ‘highly entertaining, well crafted and musically outstanding’ most of the recent performances have had audiences on their feet. Individually, Tale of the Gael have played for diplomats and film starts, with orchestras, choirs, and as solo performers, at music festivals from New Zealand to South Africa, all over Europe and the U.S., in Carnegie Hall and the Zurich Opera House, and of course regularly in their own kitchens and local sessions…

The band is popular for weddings, corporate, and diplomatic events across Europe, and often divides up into smaller units to suit the event.

Upcoming Events oTn the site will give you an idea of what the band has done, and will be doing until the end of the year. (Scroll up to find it)

Drumcliffe, August 2012

Left to right: Prannie Rhatigan’s bodhran, Mickey Dunne, Paul Dooley, Catherine Rhatigan, Dave Aebli, Eileen Carr , Back row, Colette Mc Devitt warm up before a concert in   Drumcliffe, August 2012



2 Responses to Welcome

  1. Joan says:

    That all sounds lovely. I searched “YouTube” for a rendition of “Miss Hamilton” and found you there on Martin Byrne’s posting. I am trying to learn that tune on my harp. I love it! Thank you for your version of it.
    JML, Scituate, MA

  2. Joan, I ‘m delighted you like the version. We recorded it with double bass and harp, two lovely sounding big string instruments. I wish you luck and lots of enjoyment learning and playing the tune. Catherine

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