2022 Artist Bios
Kathleen Conneely - Whistle
Born in Bedford, England, to Irish parents from Galway and Longford, Kathleen Conneely began playing Irish music at age twelve, along with her siblings, Bernadette, Michael & Pauline. She studied with Brendan Mulkere (Co. Clare), a well-regarded teacher in London. Her father Michael is a fiddle, accordion, and tin whistle player from Errislannan, Co. Galway, and their home was always filled with music from records and live sessions with visiting musicians.
Kathleen has lived in London, Dublin, Chicago, Rhode Island & Boston, and she has taught for Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann in Dublin and Boston, at the Boston College Irish Studies program, Gaelic Roots, Catskills Irish Arts Week, Swannanoa Gathering, and at various traditional music festivals throughout the U.S.
In 2012, she released her first solo CD, ‘The Coming of Spring’, and has just released a new CD, ‘All Jokes Aside’, (2022) with fellow musicians and friends: Sean Clohessy and John Coyne.
Seán Clohessy - fiddle
Seán Clohessy comes from Co Limerick and was raised in a musical family that includes his brother Cathal and sisters, Catherine and Maureen. He has been playing fiddle since his early teens, with much of his early influences coming from musicians in his native Limerick and the neighboring Co. Clare.
He spent time living and playing music in London where his music was heavily influenced by the Clare fiddle player, Brendan Mulkere. For the past several years he’s been based in Boston where he has been a key contributor in both performance and teaching. His collaboration with Sean McComiskey and Kieran Jordan in their CD entitled 'Cover the Buckle: A Collection of Irish Set Dances for Listening and Dancing' was widely acclaimed, and he has recently released an album of music, 'All Jokes Aside', with his long-time musical collaborators and friends – Kathleen Conneely and John Coyne.
John Coyne - bouzouki, song
Originally from Limerick, Ireland, John Coyne is a Boston-based bouzouki player and singer. His natural setting is playing sessions at the Druid with many of the local musicians, especially whistle player Kathleen Conneely and fiddle player Sean Clohessy. John’s family also plays Irish music with his wife Lisa on flute and concertina, daughter Josie on fiddle, and son Rory on accordion and melodeon.
John has toured across the US with fiddle and guitar player Randal Bays. He plays with Rory and Sean Clohessy as the Treaty Trio. John has performed at many festivals including Celticfest, North Texas Irish Festival, and others, often performing with friends Larre Reeves and Joey Abarta. In addition to the recording, ‘All Jokes Aside’ with Kathleen Conneely and Sean Clohessy, John has a duet recording ‘Coyne and Reeves’, performed on ‘Live at the Druid’ recording, and produced the live recording ‘From Tulla to Boston: Live at the Burren’.
Ivan Goff - flute, uilleann pipes
Ivan Goff is a member of the Irish traditional band Danú. Growing up in Dublin, Ivan was mentored by uilleann pipes great, Mick O’Brien his regular teacher for several years on both whistle and pipes. Today Ivan is equally renowned for his flute and pipes playing. Over the years he has performed worldwide in duets and ensembles with many household names in Irish music including Iarla Ó Lionáird, Mícheál Ó Raghallaigh, Martin Hayes, Cormac Breatnach, Dervish, and Lúnasa.
Since arriving in New York two decades ago, Ivan's professional credits have ranged from film and theater work to appearances with orchestras such as The New York Philharmonic and several well-known Broadway productions such as Riverdance, Sting's The Last Ship on Broadway, and Come From Away. Ivan’s teaching credits include NYU where he holds a PhD. in music.
Eimear Arkins - fiddle, song
Eimear Arkins comes from a small village on the west coast of Ireland called Ruan, County Clare. She is an award-winning musician, singer, and dancer with eleven Irish music world championship titles to her credit. Eimear has toured extensively with Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann throughout Ireland, Britain, North America, and Canada. She also has toured throughout the US and Ireland with The Paul Brock Band, Cherish the Ladies, Tomaseen Foley’s 'A Celtic Christmas', and performs regularly with harp player Eileen Gannon.
Eimear is a qualified Irish music and dance instructor. She has performed and given workshops at festivals all over the world including Féile Séamus Creagh, Newfoundland; Catskills Irish Arts Week; Viljandi Pärimusmuusika Festival, Estonia; St Louis Tionól; Canadian Celtic Celebration; and, Festival Interceltique de Lorient, France. In June 2018 she released her debut album, 'What’s Next?' and was awarded “Best Newcomer” from LiveIreland in 2019.
Natasha Sheehy - accordion
Natasha Sheehy is an accordion hailing from West Limerick, Ireland. She grew up immersed in the rich tradition of her native area - a place known for its polkas and slides. She is particularly interested in playing music for dancers and believes in the power of Irish Music to create lifelong connections between musicians, singers, dancers, and listeners alike. Natasha is currently living in Boston, where she has found a welcome home in the vibrant Irish music scene.
Natasha is part of the band, Ship In The Clouds, with Laura Feddersen (fiddle), Anna Colliton (bodhrán), and Nathan Gourley (guitar). Dan Neely of the Irish Echo says that Sheehy is “a fine player with a smooth, relaxed style.”
Sky Kelsey - banjo, fiddle, flute
Sky Kelsey was born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska, surrounded from birth by local bluegrass and Irish players around the area. At age eight he started taking fiddle lessons and by nine decided that the music of Ireland was for him. With the help of the Internet and the encouragement of his friends and community, Sky taught himself 13 instruments and hundreds of tunes. At thirteen, Sky started spending time in Colorado, became a regular with the Denver Irish scene, and started studying with James Kelly.
Sky has won multiple Fleadh competitions in banjo, fiddle, flute, whistle, and bodhran. Now based in Aspen, Colorado Sky plays with Los Boyos, and is a featured performer on Eoin O'Neill's recording 'In Session 2'. His solo recordings are available at Sky Kelsey Music. “The music for me is a living breathing tradition and expression of the soul, ... a life-long journey and a lifelong friend”.