Boston Irish Music Scene

Boston Irish Music Scene

What is the current traditional Irish Music scene in Boston like?

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Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

Thriving and clique-ish

Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

So… where does one find mates to play a few tunes in Boston, Cambridge, & then some?

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Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

right here, I would think! ;)

Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

Any way around the clique-ishness?

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Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

If it’s anything like other clique-ish places I have lived, not going to cliquey sessions is the only way around it.

Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

It’s New England. Just go, and in 6 or 7 years, you’ll fit right in.

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Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

Since no one from Beantown seems to have taken your bait yet, Bull, here are some thoughts.
I haven’t been up that way in a few years, but I do remember a good starting point. Go to the Burren, a pub in Somerville. Find the musicians playing there (which you can do most days of the week). Buy them a pint and ask them for advice. If no musicians are to be found, ask the bar staff.
http://www.burren.com/music.html
Also, there used to be a free newspaper available in area pubs, the Irish Emigrant, that had some good info in it. http://irishemigrant.com
Boston has a very thriving Irish music scene, with lots of youngsters playing exciting stuff. For example, this upcoming weekend, there is something called the BCMFest (Boston Celtic Music Festival) which hosts bunches of events throughout town. If I wasn’t struggling to recover from a bad bout with the flu, I might be heading up there myself!
Enjoy!

Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

Thanks, Al.

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Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

The Boston scene is cooking!
Plenty of good friendly sessions around town and outwards to the ring highways of Rt 128 and 495.
Highly recommended is the Green Briar on monday nights in Brighton section of the city of Boston. It’s big and varied in level and you can make contacts and build from there. I run a small session 12 miles north of Boston on Wednesdays (Al when you coming?) in Wakefield at Harrington’s pub. Nice small intermediate to advanced playing. Drop in for a tune and introduce yourself. Depending on what type of session you are looking for we can make more suggestions then. Like everywhere else just follow typical session etiquette and you will be fine. There are several session every night of the week. You will find plenty to fill your needs I bet. Everyone else does. I only have problems finding good trad sessions on Friday nights. I have a huge kitchen, anyone up for an occasional Friday night blaster in my kitchen north of the city?

Salt

Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

Hey Salt,

I will come by. What night are you at Harrington’s?

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Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

Thanks, man.

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Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

If you can’t find what you want in Boston, try Bill Black’ s website www.capeirish.com for what’s happening on Cape Cod.

Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

I used to live there, but have not for 5 years or so. The clique-ish starement is directed at the burren, hands down. If you can get "in" there, youll be set for near every night of the week. All of the other sessions are welcoming and fun, and I didn’t see as cliqueish. The greenbrier session is a slower session, very good for learning tunes. Check the emigrant, it’s very helpful. I’m assuming you are looking for trad music, so be aware that some sessions in the Boston/cape area are listed as sessions, but there is a lot of singing. If you are struggling to chose a session on a given night, don’t be afaid to call and ask. I used to go down to the cape to play, and it was lovely. Have fun!!!!

Re: Boston Irish Music Scene

Bull, The Boston session is fueled by the fact that its a virtual superb of Ireland, and the proximity to Music schools like Berklee and NE Conservatory. A a restult, there are two types of open sessions in Boston: The "welcome, tune your instrument and give us set of your favorites" sessions
AND
The " YOU want to play with US?" sessions.

The first type carry on in the spirit of the recently departed and sorely missed Larry Reynolds, the father/grandfather of the Boston session scene. Bring your best session etiquette and you are always welcome.

For specifics, Ill second the endorsement of the Green Briar on Monday nights in Brighton as a great place to start. Lots of old-timers. You’ll make contacts and learn about much of theBoston scene there. The range of players is beginners to old-timers who know more tunes than God. There is a Slow-ish session before the main sessions starts at 9:00. Gets rockin’ towards the end of the night.

The Skellig in Waltham on Tuesdays is great people and welcoming. It’s led by Mike Reynolds (son of Larry) a great box player. Welcoming, wonderful people, great place to learn. The session suffers from terrible acoustics and the pub noise can be overwhelming, but worth a visit.

The Littlest Bar in downtown Boston on Sat night is the best. Led by Brendan Bulger,a truly awesome and creative fiddler (a variation machine.) Friendly and supportive, and the bar staff are awesome. We sit in an alcove at the front so it’s intimate and self limiting. The 8th or 9th person is a bit out of the flow. Some top notch players, many playing professionally as well, so you will hear some great music. It can get blazing fast at times.

Great music at the Burren in Somerville, just about every night. Unless you are Frankie Gavin or Alec Finn, prepare to be shunned. I’ve heard Sunday afternoons can be an exception to that.

Many others, but get yourself to the Green Briar to hear about more.

Welcome to Boston!

-G

Re: the Burren

"prepare to be shunned. I’ve heard Sunday afternoons can be an exception to that."

I know nothing about the other days, but at the Sunday afternoon session we were graciously welcomed from out of town…. John (leader, on box) was great.