John Williams. From Irish Music Stories PodcastHey, everybody. It’s Shannon Heaton. I play Irish flute, sing; and I’m launching a series of 35-minute (ish) audio stories about Irish music and dance.

I’ll talk to people all around the U.S., Ireland, and beyond about what traditional means to them, and how they’ve been shaped by jigs, reels, and ballads. Here’s a 3-minute teaser, in which Evanston, Illinois-based accordion player John Williams talks about being a 7 year old and playing waltzes for his parents’ cocktail parties:

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Liz Carroll and Shannon Heaton. From Irish Music Stories PodcastYou’ll also hear fiddler Liz Carroll reflect on the importance of the social AND the introspective moments that she finds through Irish music. And Karan Casey shares ideas on how she uses Irish songs to broaden her world view and explore different thought processes.

I hope you’ll listen to the three-minute intro, and get a taste of what I’ll be launching on Tuesday February 14th. Episode 01 will tell the story of an underdog band of Boston kids who joined 400,000 people for an annual festival and music competition.

Also… if you’re in the Boston area, I’ve assembled a flight of performers for this year’s edition of the Boston Celtic Music Fest Finale concert. With loads of live music and dance AND clips from the Irish Music Stories podcast, we’ll take a tour of the Irish tradition–to consider where it’s been, where it’s going, and why people around the globe are into trad Irish music and dance.

After the BCMFest show, I’ll head to Ireland for a few more interviews for the podcast. Because I’ve been at this all year, I know that I’ll go in with great questions and ideas for my stories. And we will end up with unexpected stories and insights. There is NO taming the Irish music wind.

I hope you’ll join me in this journey, starting with this 3-minute preview. And if you like what you hear, I hope you’ll try out more episodes:

Episode 01-Trip to Sligo
Episode 02-Cuppa Tea with Karan Casey