39 episodes

The show about traditional music, and the bigger stories behind it. Host Shannon Heaton talks to musicians, dancers, and scholars about where Irish music has been, where it's going, and what it means to so many people around the globe. Whether you already play fiddle or know dance steps, or you don't know anything about traditional music, the emphasis of this show is creativity, community, and heritage.

Irish Music Stories Podcast Shannon Heaton

    • Music

The show about traditional music, and the bigger stories behind it. Host Shannon Heaton talks to musicians, dancers, and scholars about where Irish music has been, where it's going, and what it means to so many people around the globe. Whether you already play fiddle or know dance steps, or you don't know anything about traditional music, the emphasis of this show is creativity, community, and heritage.

    Episode 37-Tune Tale with Helen Kisiel

    Episode 37-Tune Tale with Helen Kisiel

    What do you do when language just can’t capture how hilarious—and important—an encounter in Ennis, County Clare was? Write a tune about it. That’s what Brendan Tonra did. Pianist Helen Kisiel recounted one of those tune memories in this month’s off season installment.

    • 5 min
    Episode 36-Tune Tale with Billy McComiskey

    Episode 36-Tune Tale with Billy McComiskey

    Where do the tunes come from? When does inspiration hit? Host Shannon Heaton learns that it's all about timing, in this short story about a jig by accordion player Billy McComiskey.

    • 5 min
    Episode 35- Last Night’s Food

    Episode 35- Last Night’s Food

    What’s up with the endless cups of Irish tea? Is there something genuinely nourishing about a pile of french fries and melted cheese? Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh, Matthew Olwell, Jamie McClennan, and Matt Heaton help host Shannon Heaton digest the meaning behind the menu. Additional tasty tales from Kevin Doyle, Liz Carroll, John Williams, and Kathleen Conneely.

    • 33 min
    Episode 34-Fairy Forts and Changelings

    Episode 34-Fairy Forts and Changelings

    Are Irish fairies REAL? And if so, could there be Sí folk living in New England?? Fiddle player Martin Hayes, singer Emily Smith, and storyteller Máirtín de Cógáin help me and this month’s co-producer Nigel Heaton investigate songs, stories, and possible gateways to the Otherworld.

    Plenty of music here, too. Full playlist at IrishMusicStories.org

    • 52 min
    Episode 33-The Irish Woodshed

    Episode 33-The Irish Woodshed

    What do the Irish music and dance worlds think about practicing? Fiddle players Fergal Scahill, Finn Magill, and Rose Flanagan; banjo player Martin Howley; cellist Natalie Haas; flute player Nicole Rabata; and dancer Kieran Jordan share thoughts about woodshedding in the trad world.

    • 45 min
    Episode 32-Cuppa Tea with Len Graham

    Episode 32-Cuppa Tea with Len Graham

    Why learn old songs from your neighbors, when the airwaves are brimming with NEW music? And how can a rooster’s crow affect singing technique? Hear stories behind Len Graham’s life of song in this month’s Cuppa Tea chat. No matter the aperture, apertoire, or repertoire, Len’s got a story (and a song) to suit the situation.

    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

Ger Pa ,

End of Season.....Looking forward to next season

Have been listening for just about a over a year now and have gone back and listened to all the episodes. I did not hear one episode that was not enjoyable from the perspective of music, tales from the artists, and ability to bring me back to personal memories and experiences around music from my early days in North of Ireland and beyond
Can’t wait for next seasons’ episodes

87272 ,

An Irish music lover’s companion

If you don’t play or sing but can’t get enough of Irish music, if your friends and family are happy you have a hobby but don’t quite get it, if you’re looking for deep dives into the topic: This is the next best thing to being there yourself in a pub in Boston or Chicago or Dublin or Dingle. The topics are well selected, the conversations are interesting and the music is of course spectacular. Just listen.

mattguitarheaton ,

A fantastic labor of love

This show has the production values of the best in the business (this American life, 99% invisible) with the personal touch of blindboy. A true insiders guide to a music tradition, and how that tradition can effect and guide almost every aspect of life. Musicians will love it, but so will people who just enjoy well told stories.

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