Monthly Archives: January 2015

Kevin Burke & Celtic Fiddle Festival at Caltech in 2 Weeks, FRIDAY, February 13; Heartfelt Music tomorrow

Following a nearly full capacity turnout and fine show from Jim Malcolm last week, the Pasadena Folk Music Society returns in two weeks with another great show, the Celtic Fiddle Festival on FRIDAY, February 13 at 8:00 p.m. in Beckman Institute Auditorium (Little Beckman).

Some of you will have heard Kevin Burke at Caltech in his three solo appearances, and maybe a few of you even heard Kevin here with the group Patrick Street, or even earlier, with Andy Irvine and Gerry O’Beirne. Kevin first became known with the legendary Celtic group, the Bothy Band, and while we never hosted them, Society founder Brian Toby managed to bring Kevin and fellow Bothy member Mícheál Ó Domhnaill to Caltech in one of our very first shows.

We’ve been thrilled with Kevin’s recent solo shows, and there have been many requests for his return. In 2015, we’ve hit the jackpot as we welcome Celtic Fiddle Festival for a very special show.  Just listen to this clip of them playing at Edinburgh’s Queen’s Hall where they perform the medley “La Belle Catherine/Le Step á Ti-Phonse/Reel á Toto.”

Celtic Fiddle Festival consists of fiddlers Kevin Burke (Ireland), Christian Lemaître (Brittany, France), and André Brunet (Québec), joined by guitarist Nicolas Quemener (Brittany).  This super-group of Celtic fiddling celebrated its 20th anniversary of performing in 2013, and throughout its existence has been all about energy, excitement, and excellent musicianship. Celtic Fiddle Festival was originally formed by Kevin, Silly Wizard’s Johnny Cunningham, and Christian Lemaître, and it was a brilliant scheme to bring different traditions of Celtic fiddling together. Upon Johnny Cunningham’s sudden, untimely death, replacing him with another Scottish fiddler seemed impossible, so they eventually reached out to an entirely different branch of Celtic music tradition, that of Quebec, once again with stunning results.

Presenting this full band is a dream-come-true, as Kevin’s beautifully fluid, highly ornamented style of County Sligo is joined by Christian’s unerring control and propulsive energy on the hypnotically rhythmic Breton dance tunes and by André’s vast repertoire of French-Canadian jigs and reels and distinctive footwork while playing. Add in Nicolas’s masterful open-tuning guitar and we’ll have a wonderful night of music. Don’t miss it!  Celtic Fiddle Festival’s web site is

Tickets are $20, with $5 tickets for Caltech students and children.  Call (626) 395-4652 to order them and for further information. You can buy tickets online and probably at the door on the night of the show. (We’ll keep you posted if we get close to a sellout.)

heartfelt-musicIf we read our calendar correctly, John and Deanne Davis will be doing their “fifth Saturday of the month” version of Heartfelt Music on KPFK this Saturday, January 31 from 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m.  These longtime champions of folk music are always fun to reconnect with.  They always share a wealth of great recorded music and we encourage you to give the show a listen at 90.7 FM or on the KPFK archives for two weeks after the show at