Entertainment » Music


Saturday April 15 at 8:00PM

Somerville Theatre, Boston, MA



Saturday, April 15, 8pm, Somerville Theatre

"The best Irish traditional band in the world." -- Boston Herald

Cambridge, MA ? World Music presents Solas on Saturday, April 15, 8pm at Somerville Theatre, 55 Davis Sq., Somerville. Tickets are $28 and $22. For tickets and information call World Music (617) 876-4275 or buy online at www.WorldMusic.org.

No current band in Irish music has risen faster and farther in such a short time than Solas. Not even a decade in the making, Solas has emerged as on of the most exciting bands in traditional Irish music. Featuring multi-instrumentalist Seamus Egan, fiddler Winifred Horan, accordion and tin-whistle player Mick McAuley, guitarist Eamon McElholm and vocalist Deirde Scanlan, Solas creates a Celtic sound that is timelessly traditional and utterly new.

Solas? members, now based out of New York, have come from such groundbreaking ensembles as Chanting House, Cherish the Ladies, the Sharon Shannon Band, Green Fields of America and Atlantic Bridge. The ensemble, comprised of five master soloists, has that uncanny ability to generate an almost hypnotic synchronous sound. At one moment they will tear into a dizzyingly fast set of reels, laced with playful splashes of jazz, blues and world influences, only to then quickly turn to a delicate air or breathtaking ballad.

Seamus Egan was born in the Philadelphia-area, but grew up both there and in Ireland. For many years, he has reigned as one of the brightest stars on the Celtic music scene. At 15, he accomplished a feat that has never been matched by winning the prestigious All-Ireland Championship on four separate instruments: flute, tin whistle, banjo and mandolin. The Irish Echo named him the most outstanding performer of Irish traditional music in 1996. The youngest recipient of the Echo?s annual honor, Egan is decidedly America?s most accomplished multi-instrumentalist in Irish traditional music today, proficient on no fewer than 10 instruments: flute, tin whistle, tenor banjo, mandolin, low whistle, uilleann pipes, nylon-string guitar, tres, bouzouki and bodhran. His playing has been featured on the movie soundtracks of Dead Man Walking and The Brothers McMullen, the compositions for which he co-produced, performed and arranged/co-arranged on all but one of the tracks. His most recent solo release, When Juniper Sleeps (Shanachie), has received rave reviews from within and beyond Celtic circles. This past summer, Egan added acting to his many talents by completing the independent film American Wake.

Native New Yorker Winifred Horan, an All-Ireland champion fiddler and step-dancer, studied Irish fiddling at an early age, winning an All-Ireland Junior Championship at age 11. Later switching to classical music, she studied violin at the New England Conservatory of Music, performing with a number of string quartets and orchestras, including the Boston Pops. In 1990, she returned to playing Irish music and made her mark with the brilliant Irish-American women?s ensemble Cherish the Ladies. She has toured with the Sharon Shannon Band, performed with Pierce Turner and was the featured fiddler on Egan?s When Juniper Sleeps. She also co-wrote some of the tracks for the film The Brothers McMullen. In October 2002, Horan released her long-awaited debut solo album, Just One Wish (Shanachie), where she reveals herself as a rare roots player who can also make intelligent, personal music outside the traditional arena.

Deirdre Scanlan brings beautiful vocals and accomplished guitar playing to Solas? outstanding sound. Originally from Nenagh, Tipperary, Scanlan released a critically acclaimed solo album, Speak Softly, in Ireland in 1999. She made her live debut with Solas at Radio City Music Hall in March 2000 where the band accompanied the Jean Butler/Colin Dunne step-dancing show Dancing on Dangerous Ground, for which Seamus Egan composed the music.

Hailing from Callan, Kilkenny, Mick McAuley is a master accordion and whistle player and lends his voice on several songs in Solas? repertoire. He has also performed with Ron Havana, Niamey Parsons and Karan Casey, among many others. In September 2003, Mick released his Shanchie debut, An Ocean?s Breadth.

Solas? newest member is guitarist Eamon McElholm, who has also been adding his many talents as an accomplished singer/songwriter, keyboard player and background vocalist for Solas since August 2002. As student in Manchester, England, Eamon was awarded the Performing Rights Society/John Lennon Songwriters Award. More recently, he has worked throughout America and Europe with Cathal Hayden, Dezi Donnelly and Mike McGoldrick, playing a mixture of instrumental roots music alongside his own original songs.

Solas has released seven albums on Shanachie: Solas (1996), Sunny Spells and Scattered Showers (1997), The Words That Remain (1998), The Hour Before Dawn (2000), The Edge of Silence (2002), Another Day (2003) and, most recently, Waiting For An Echo (2005).