Monday, September 6, 2010


The Niall Toner Band are an Irish bluegrass band from the Blackstairs mountain region of Ireland.

The Band was founded by Niall Toner in March, 2001, with Clem O'Brien and Dick Gladney. The Trio perform a set of all-original songs and instrumentals, and their unique sound is a rich blend of Traditional Acoustic Country Music and Bluegrass, with a distinctive Celtic twist.
The diversity of the band's set ranges from contemporary up-tempo Western Swing pieces like Mood Swing, to inspirational Gospel-style songs like Walk On Water, and the haunting Bill Monroe tribute, The Master's Resting Place.
To date, the Band have recorded and released three CD albums, and they perform live on a regular basis at Festivals, Venues and Arts Centres in Ireland, the UK, Europe and the USA.
Niall Toner is widely regarded as one of Ireland's leading experts on Bluegrass and American Country Music, and he brings this knowledge of Music to a wide audience, both through his live performances with NTB and various workshops, as well as through his Radio Show, Roots Freeway, which is broadcast on Ireland's National Radio Station, RTE Radio One.

Niall's songs have been recorded by many artistes, including Bill Wyman [ Rolling Stones ], The Nashville Bluegrass Band, Albert Lee, Special Consensus, Keith Sewell, The Swanson Family, The Fleadh

Woodbine are a four piece bluegrass/acoustic country band formed in 2002. We have played all the Irish bluegrass and related festivals since our formation, these include the Athy Bluegrass Festival, Omagh Bluegrass Festival (Ulster American Folk Park), Dunmore-East Bluegrass Festival, Bluegrass on the Walls Festival(Derry), Banjo Festival (Longford), Rhythm & Roots Festival (Kilkenny), Guinness & Oyster Bluegrass W/end (Kilkenny), Airfield House Urban Roots Festival (Dublin) and Ardara Bluegrass Festival (Donegal). We have released three albums "Shades O' Grass" 2004, and "Tulla Hill" 2007. Tulla Hill featured 2 of our own songs the title track "Tulla Hill" and "A Match Made In Heaven"and our latest "Free As A Breeze" with 13 tracks including a new banjo tune written by Richard. All albums have been very well received. We play a great mix of material from Bill Monroe to Flatt & Scruggs to Doc Watson to Rhonda Vincent to Hank Williams and much more in between. Band line up is Liam Wright: Lead Guitar,Lead & Harmony Vocals. Nicola O Brien: Double Bass,Lead & Harmony Vocals. Tony O Brien: Rhythm Guitar, Lead & Harmony Vocals. Richard Hawkins: 5 Stg' Banjo. Clem O Brien sometimes guests with the band on Guitar & Dobro
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we are Bending The Strings Bluegrass Band. Our band name comes from a great banjo instrumental which our banjo player Martin features on our album and in our live set. Our band is a three piece, and not your usual bluegrass trio for we feature a piano strongly in our set, both as a rhythm and bass instrument and also it's featured strongly as a lead instrument also and what most people dont realise, so also did the great master of bluegrass himself, Bill Monroe. While to a large extent Bill Monroe's Bluegrass Boys was made up of , Mandolin, Banjo, Fiddle,Acoustic guitar and Bull Fiddle(bass) Bill used piano to great effect in several of his timeless Bluegrass evergreens, most notably in The Prisoners Song. The man responsible for getting us together is Martin Cooney, who is both one of the finest Bluegrass Banjo players anywwhere and a veritable wealth of knowledge on the history of Bluegrass and it's players. Martin Cooney is the man responsible for the very first Athy Bluegrass festival, and stayed at the helm of that festival for may years and brought the festival to the popularity it now holds. Martin has met many of the greats of American Bluegrass music and has many great stories to that effect. As well as playing banjo in the band, Martin plays fine guitar, is a vocalist in the band and is also a serious Irish Traditional Music player as well. Vinny Baker is the bands guitarist first came to know Bluegrass when he played in the 70s with famous Bluegrass fiddler George Kaye and his band. That work with George was to leave a lasting impression on Vinny and remained a follower of Bluegrass ever since, despite going through Rock, Metal, Blues and Country bands, he emerged at the other end still in love with Bluegrass and it was his meeting with Martin Cooney that re-kindled his love of the music. Moyra Fraser is our piano player,and while piano may not seem to be an obvious Bluegrass instrument, when you hear Moyra play a sizzling Bluegrass break in one of the bands sets, you will be left in no doubt that the piano is indeed at home in Bluegrass music. We feature the piano as a solo instrument because it offers such a brilliant contrast to the acoustic guitar and 5 string banjo, and in Moyr's hands it is as if it was designed ONLY to play the great music of Bill Monroe,Flat & Scruggs,The Stanley Brothers and other greats of the Music. Moyra is a brilliant Traditional Irish and Scottish Music accordion and piano player and holds a Masters degree in music, and as well plays Classical, Country and Jazz with equal ease and is a brilliant improvisationalist which comes in real handy in a bluegrass band--as you can imagine. On top of all that she is a great singer and her high lonesome harmonies fill out the three part harmony so much associated with Bluegrass Music. Bending the Strings have a CD out, entitled...curiously enough 'BENDING THE STRINGS' and features all three members on vocals,instrumentals and all take some blistering solos throughout the CD. The CD contains 10 tracks, including...Bending the Strings....Kiss Me Mother...I wonder where you are Tonight...Black Mountain Rag...Daybreak in Dixi....Earls Breakdown...Roseville Fair....Rockytop...The Ballad of Jed Clampet...& Rose of SanAntone. Have a listen to our album and hear for your self...We hope you will enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it, playing Bluegrass for us is never hard work...just a labour of love. Come and hear BENDING THE STRINGS when we are playing a venue close to you and hear a new twist on Traditional Bluegrass

The Sullivan Brothers have been playing music around Ireland for the last 12 years in bands called The One I'd Jax, Smith 'n' Wesson and more recently and what they'e more known for The Honeysuck'rs. But in 2006 the guys decided to go out on their own and try to get their own songs out to the public.

On June 30th 2006 Shane & Adrian Sullivan released their 1st single 'High', which entered the Irish singles charts at no.5.
KEEP HOLDIN ON the debut album of The Sullivan Brothers was released 29th September 2006. From the rock 'n' roll of 'She' to the country/trad of Steve Young's 'Seven Bridges Road' to the powerfully haunting title track 'Keep Holdin On', they mould different genres and influences combined with their absorbing harmonies into what is most definitely their own sound.
Now, alongside The Brand New Companions (Sean McKerr - mandolin, Roy Brennan - Stand-up Bass and Rob Chanders Jr - Banjo), The Sullivan Brothers have gone back to their roots playing original music thats being described as 'contempory folk', which is a must see live show.


For those of you who don't know us,were a 5 piece bluegrass band from Waterford City, Ireland.

Our music is authentic bluegrass and gospel from artists like Bill Monroe,Flatt & Scruggs Ricky Skaggs just to name a few.
We have come so far over the last year from doing small gigs to being a festival band and we have been getting rave reviews in the media over the last few months so we hope this is the start of something fresh for us,
We hope you will join us on this journey of bluegrass
The Band

Tony Wall - 5 string banjo
Finbar Healy - Mandolin
John Hearne - Bass
Ray O'Brien - Guitar
Gerry Wall - Guitar


4 Piece Bluegrass band with 5 string banjo, mandolin, double bass & guitar.
Playing an energetic mixture of contemporary and traditional Bluegrass music.

Aran Sheehan (Mandolin)

Patrick Simpson (Guitar)

Conor Daly (Banjo)

Will Comerford (Bass Fiddle


We are delighted to have the Mallow boys back in Bruff and they will be playing various
venues over the weekend

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