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Paddy O'Brien Biography

Paddy O'Brien Tickets

Paddy O'Brien In-depth Biography

Button accordionist and musicologist Paddy O'Brien} was born September 13, 1945 in Daingean, County Offaly, Ireland; after spending several years travelling the Irish countryside learning and collecting traditional songs and folklore -- over the decades, he would amass more than 3000 jigs, reels, airs and marches -- he made his professional debut in 1966 with the Ballinamere Céilí Band}, later touring the eastern U.S. with Seán} and Kathleen Ryan}. In 1969 -- the year he won the first of four top honors in the Oireachtas Competition solo accordion contest -- O'Brien} relocated to Dublin, where he regularly played pubs alongside fiddlers John Kelly} and Joe Ryan}; until 1978, he also played with the Castle Céilí Band}, concurrently backing Ceoltoiri Laighean} as well. Named All-Ireland senior accordion champion in 1975, three years later O'Brien} returned to the U.S. to join fiddler James Kelly} and guitarist Dáithí Sproule} in the trio Bowhand}, which debuted with the Shanachie} release Is It Yourself?}; Spring in the Air} followed in 1980, and in 1983 he officially settled in Minneapolis. With banjo player Seán O'Driscoll} and singer/guitarist Tom Dahill}, O'Brien} next formed the group Hill 16}, issuing a self-titled LP in 1984; he made his long-awaited solo debut in 1988, issuing Stranger at the Gate} on Green Linnet}. With a 1994 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, he recorded some 500 traditional songs for the massive Paddy O'Brien Tune Collection: A Personal Treasury of Irish Jigs and Reels}; the following year, O'Brien} formed the group Chulrua} with singer/guitarist Pat Egan} and piper Michael Cooney}. ~ Jason Ankeny, All Music Guide

Paddy O'Brien Biography / Paddy O'Brien Information

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