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The University of Hartford

Notes from Celtic Airs
With your host Steve Dieterich July/August 1998

     Celtic Airs is proud to announce the return of Old Blind Dogs on Friday, July 31, 1998. This will be the highly acclaimed, much requested band’s third trip to Hartford. They rated us one of their two favorite venues on the last tour, and asked their agent to book them here again. We were only too happy to accommodate them!
     This 16th in the Celtic concert series will take place at 7:30 PM in the Wilde Auditorium. Tickets are already on sale through the University Box Office, 1-800-274-8587 or 768-4228. There is no service charge for these WWUH sponsored benefit concerts.
     Ian Benzies is still the elder statesman and lead vocalist/guitar player for this Aberdeenshire based Scottish quintet. He is ably supported by Johnnie Hardy on fiddle, mandolin and backing vocals, Buzby MacMillan on cittern, bass, whistle and vocals, Davy Cattanach on percussion and vocals and Frasier Fifield on Scottish small pipes and whistle. Both of their previous concerts here have been sell-outs well in advance, with minimal publicity, so I recommend you purchase your tickets soon!
     We have additional concerts scheduled for the later part of 1998. They include the Belfast based quartet Craobh Rua on 9/25/98 and The Cathy Ryan Trio on 11/12/98, both at 7:30 in the Wilde Auditorium. The proposed House Band concert in December fell through.
     Craobh Rua features fiddle, uillean pipes, whistle, banjo, mandolin, guitar, bouzouki and vocals. Cathy Ryan was the lead vocalist for Cherish the Ladies on their first two albums and wrote many of the best songs on those releases. She has a solo CD (produced by Seamus Egan of Solas) already with a second due out before the November tour
     Sad news from Christy Moore. After canceling his entire winter European tour, he’s announced that he’s quit the performing life! No concerts, recordings or interviews. Hopefully this will be a short retirement.
     The Battlefield Band have released a new CD, their first featuring Davey Steele as lead vocalist/guitarist, replacing Alasdair Russell. Piper Mike Katz has also replaced Ian MacInnes on this new album entitled "Rain, Hail and Shine." The band will be touring New England in August in support of the album with at stop at Northampton’s Iron Horse Music Hall scheduled for August 9th.
     Jez Lowe and the (new) Bad Pennies also have a new album, "The Parish Notices," on Green Linnet, and are rumored to be setting up a tour in 1999 to promote the album.
     This month marks the 30th Anniversary of WWUH radio. In honor of this auspicious occasion I’d like to offer this brief history of Celtic music on the station.
     To the best of my knowledge, Maureen Brennan first began playing Celtic music at WWUH about ten years ago. Maureen hosted Monday FM on Toast for four years before moving on the California where she is now a booking agent for Celtic bands including Dervish. At that point, Arne Langsetmo, the Tuesday Toast host, took over the Celtic genre. A year later, Arne also decided to move to California to go to law school. I had been a faithful listener to Maureen’s program and before she left, she convinced me to take the WWUH training course in hopes that someday I might replace her and keep Celtic music alive at 91.3 FM. Well, I never did take Maureen’s slot, but five years ago I did take Arne’s place and "Celtic Airs" was born. It has been thriving ever since. Ed McKeon convinced me to present Celtic artists in benefit concerts for the station after his experience with "The Folk Next Door." That series has been an ongoing success story beyond any of our hopes and dreams.
     I hope you’ll continue to tune in to "Celtic Airs" Tuesdays from 6 am to 9 am for the latest in Celtic music and news as well as plenty of older material we all love. And don’t forget the Celtic concert line providing information on live Celtic music performances throughout New England. It’s just part of the WWUH Listener Line, 768-5913, available to you 24 hours a day.

Copyright©WWUH: July/August Program Guide, 1998

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