Orange Yard. Off Manette Street
0844 847 2465
Belfast-born uilleann piper John McSherry and Detroit natives Tyler Duncan and Michael Shimmin have been dreaming of The Olllam for a decade. With a name inspired by the ollam bards of Irish lore, the trio wanted to create an ensemble that naturally represented their combined experience in a multiplicity of styles.
Trance-like melodies, stunning instrumental virtuosity and a magical marriage of tradition and technology, somewhere between Plaid and Planxty: Trad meets Tortoise with the ambient emotionalism of Nick Drake or Explosions in the Sky: in January The Olllam make their long-awaited debut appearances in England and Scotland.
McSherry, one of the finest uilleann pipers of his generation – dubbed “a true master” by Irish Music Magazine – was a founding member of Lúnasa and is well known for his ’90s stint with Donal Lunny’s Coolfin and currently with his group At First Light.
With Duncan and Shimmin busy in the States with Irish-jazz crossover group Millish, Duncan doing double-duty in the dance-rock group My Dear Disco/Ella Riot. It seemed that the right moment for collaboration between the three musicians might never present itself.
Then, in February 2012, the trio finally wrote and recorded an original album together, overcoming the Atlantic divide by means of the internet: they rehearsed and composed live on Skype and built the tracks one part at a time between emails. The result, their eponymous debut the olllam, released in autumn 2012 on Compass Records, and subsequent tour dates in Ireland and the USA have been rapturously received. Now at last they’re coming across the Irish Sea as a six-piece band: bassist on the album Joe Dart has become a full member of the group, with Theo Katzman (guitars) and Woody Goff (keys) completing the touring line up.
“If Lúnasa set the gold standard for traditional acoustic music, these guys are bucking for platinum. The word ollam is old Irish for a master musician, and there are three master musicians here.” – Irish Music Magazine
“The olllam’s new sound will surely fly high . . .” – The Irish Times
“. . . an exquisite combination of virtuosic acoustic music with electric instruments. ‘the olllam’ is an extraordinary Irish fusion album by three masters happily at work.” – World Music Central
“. . . it definitely lives up to the hype.”- Tradconnect
Sisters Órlaith & Brogan McAuliffe are a Flute and Concertina duet, who were born and raised in London. Their family roots stem from Co. Kerry, Ireland as their parents hail from Killarney. With numerous All Britain and All Ireland Fleadh medals under their belts, Órlaith and Brogan can be regularly found performing at various concerts and frequenting the thriving London-session scene. Most notably the duo have enjoyed playing support gigs for the likes of Matt Molloy, Beoga, Kayna, and Le Cheile at the opening of the Return to Camden Town Festival in 2012. They will be joined this evening by multi-instrumentalist Sarah Mooney, member of The Blackthorn Band, Rocas and Rookwood, who will be demonstrating her talents on guitar.
Presented in association with the London Irish Centre
Strictly over 14s, under 16s with adult (photographic ID required).
Tickets available to personal callers at the venue Monday-Friday 11am – 6.30pm.