NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

PortWatch

March 14, 2013

Celebrate St. Patrick's Day with concerts, Irish music

Celebrate your Irish side with music, parties

It isn’t your parents’ version of Irish music, but it will definitely get you into the St. Patrick’s Day spirit.

Goitse, a five-piece band from Ireland, will make their first appearance in the Boston area during a special St. Patrick’s Day concert at the Roots Music Series at the Belleville Church tomorrow night.

“This is the new Irish, but is based on traditional Irish music,” said Ken Irwin, one of the organizers of the church’s concert series. “They started as a traditional band, and tradition is still the basis for what they are doing, but as they’ve grown, they’ve fused the traditional music with elements of other genres. This is lively music with great energy and instrumental virtuosity. It’ll keep your toes tapping all night long.”

Goitse, which is an informal Gaelic greeting that means “come here,” formed several years ago after its members met as students at Limerick University’s Irish World Academy of Music and Dance. Gradually, the Irish folk band took shape. The band members still live in Limerick.

“It’s traditional music with our own kind of stamp on it,” said Colm Phelan, who plays the bodhran, an Irish frame drum. “It’s traditional Irish music with a twist.”

Sometimes, the group will use traditional medleys and other times, they will write their own songs, or mix the two elements, he added.

The band, which released a debut album in 2010, includes singer Aine McGeeney — who also plays on the fiddle — and Tadhg O’Meacair on the piano and piano accordion. McGeeney performs in both English and Irish.

James Harvey on the banjo and mandolin and Conal O’Kane on guitar and banjo complete the quintet.

The music begins at 8 p.m. at Belleville Congregational Church, 300 High St., Newburyport.

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