Paddy Keenan (Uilleann pipes), featuring Padraic Conroy (guitar). Tunes include: Dinny O'Brien's, The Garden of Daisies, The Harvest Home (aka Cork Hornpipe or The Cincinnati Hornpipe). Recorded in Mendocino,California in April 2011. Impressive finale includes super-technical hornpipe.

Biography - by Linda Seida

Paddy Keenan is one of Ireland's leading uilleann pipers, and possibly the best of the best performing today. A fellow musician who played with Keenan in the Bothy Band compared his outstanding skill and talent on the pipes to Jimi Hendrix's legendary ability with a guitar.

Keenan was born into a musical family in County Meath, Ireland. Brother Johnny Keenan made a name for himself as a fine banjoist, and his father crafted uilleann pipes. His grandfather and father both played the instrument, and Keenan began playing when he was ten years old. Four years later, barely into his teens, he performed at Dublin's Gaiety Theatre. He went on to join a family band named the Pavees. The togetherness didn't last when Keenan, at the age of 17, discovered the blues and headed to Europe. The piper started performing there and in England.

Ireland lured him back within several years. With Michael O Dhomhnaill on guitar and Triona Ni Dhomhnaill on keyboards, Keenan started to perform in the Dublin region. The small group soon expanded to include Matt Mollov on flute, Paddy Glackin on fiddle, Tony MacMahon on accordion, and Donal Lunny on guitar. They dubbed their band Seachtar, which means seven in English, which was the number of players within their group.

With Seachtar, Keenan played concerts in Dublin and across Ireland, but the band soon unraveled. MacMahon left, followed by Glackin. Tommy Peoples, a fiddler from Donegal, came aboard and the group of musicians renamed themselves the Bothy Band. Kevin Burke later stepped in to take over on fiddle.

The group grew in stature and influence, drawing attention to Keenan's virtuosity. While Lunny offered the Hendrix comparison, others equated Keenan's unfettered and animated improvisational piping with jazz legend John Coltrane. Following the Bothy Band's demise in 1979, the piper went solo. See Hot Conya Record label

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Comment by Sue Shepherd on July 25, 2011 at 17:11
I found the video of Paddy Keenan with a fiddle player, Gerry O'Conner. You can click it on this page but the page changed and somehow I didn't realize it had when I clicked back to this page.
Comment by Sue Shepherd on July 25, 2011 at 17:09

As it turns out often when one views a YouTube video, other related videos show up, ready to be clicked.


I did click another video. Strangelyl, it seems that at least some of the time the "new" video pops into the space where the entitled one is without changing the comments. Something like that. I was on this page and there was a different video.


Personally, I am very enamored of Paddy Keenan's Uilleann pipe playing. I even remember the first occasion I heard him, which was in 1991 when I bought my then 10-year-old son who was taking fiddle lessons with Liz Carroll the cassette tape: Doublin: Paddy Glackin and Paddy Keenan. Since then my son Devin still plays the fiddle and rooms with an Uilleann pipe player.


Thanks all for your observations. In the future I'll know to match the comments or title with the actual video.

Comment by Connie Rae Crone on July 25, 2011 at 0:41
Lars, is correct.  No fiddler in this video (although this setting would definitely be class for some serious fiddle playing - I'd really like to hear it played with a great fiddle player someday)!!!.  I believe that the first two tunes in this set were recorded on one of Paddy's CD's -"Na Keen Affair"; I'll have to listen to the CD to see later to find out if maybe a fiddler is included in that recorded arrangement.
Comment by Lars 'Larry Mór' Mott on July 24, 2011 at 10:33
Are we watching the same video Sue? There's not a fiddle player in sight in the one i see : )
Comment by Sue Shepherd on July 24, 2011 at 5:19

This video has a wonderful fiddle player. What is his name, please?

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