Joe Burke is among the greatest exponents of traditional Irish Music. His sheer musical brilliance, his knowledge and love of his land, its music and culture has earned him an immortal place in the history of Irish music and Folklore. His technical virtuosity is unique, but that is just part of his great artistry. Joe traces the sources and melodic forms of Irish Music back to the rhythms and cadences of Irish speech and language, and feels that they have an intimate relationship with each other. To him the music is expressive and emotional, evoking the Irish countryside and the varying humour of the people. From Kilnadeema, East Galway, Joe Burke is widely regarded as the master accordionist who started a huge revival of interest in the intstrument. A legend in his own time, many of the younger generation, now famous players themselves, have been inspired by his style and technique. He has travelled all over the word and his recordings have been widely acclaimed. His live performances, as well as his own charm and wit have made him a favourite with all lovers of Irish music.

Joe Burke gave his first public performance in November 1955. He has been performing Irish traditional music for fifty years and has made many recordings for various companies including Gael Linn, Outlet, Shanachie, Shaskeen, Green linnet and now records exclusively for New Century Music. His first recordings for Gael Linn in the 50's were released on 78rpm discs. They were to be the last 78's ever released in Europe. His recording career has spanned five decades and all formats from 78's to current CD's. His classic solo albums have sold worldwide and the early ones are considered "Collctors Items". Apart from his solo albums Joe has recorded with many musical greats including Andy McGann and Felix Dolan, Sean Maguire and Josephine Keegan, Michael Cooney and Terry Corcoran, Charlie Lennon, Frankie Gavin, Kevin Burke, Brian Conway, Noreen O'Donaghue and Mike Rafferty. Hi also recorded an album of traditional music from East Galway on which he plays concert flute and is joined by Harpist Marie Ni Chathasaigh.

Joe Burke's music has taken him from country halls and pubs in rural Ireland to the most prestigius Concert Halls worldwide. He has performed solo at Carnagie Hall, New York; The Royal Albert Hall, London; Unuesque Hall, Paris and the Great American Musical Hall, San Francisco.

Joe has played at all the major festivals at home and abroad and has given Master Classes and workships on the accordion from Drumshambo, Co. Leitrim, Ireland to Paris, France, to Dallas, Texas, U.S.A. and as far afield as the logging and fishing towns in Alaska. His trips and music classes in Paris (early eighties), and his association with some of the great French players has influenced musicians such as Mark Perone to excpand his repertoire and include Irish traditional music in many of his performances.

In 1959 and 1960 Joe Burke won the "All Ireland Senior Accordion Championship". He was ovted "Traditional Musician of the Year" in 1970 by Irish Television (R.T.E). He went on to host his own Radio Show on K.D.H.X St Louis Missouri for two years (1989-1991). This very popular show was called "Ireland in America". Chosen to represent Ireland at the prestigious International Accordion Festival in 1989 in Montmagny, Quebec, he participated with world greats such as Marin Nasturica (Romania), Jaques Dumont (France) and Raynold Oullet (Canada). Representing Ireland again in "Accordions that shook the World" 1992, Joe toured with Art Van Dame, Santiago Jimenez Jr., Guy Klucev

In Rostrevor, Co. Down, Ireland he was awarded "Hall of Fame" in 1990. His tours with Portland Maine Performing Arts, Irish Arts Council, Comhaltas Ceoltóiri Éireann and Northern Ireland Arts Council were memorable.

His shows with Annie Conroy Burke feature music, stories and traditions of East Galway.

Source : www.joeburkemusic.com

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