Another in a series of features about BCMFest 2016 that will be appearing in this blog right up until the festival (January 8 and 9, if it’s not on your calendar yet), so as to better acquaint you with the events, activities and personalities that make up BCMFest.
If you go to a Celtic music festival with the hope — no, make that the expectation — of being able to join in a song or two, well, you should get yourself to The Attic at 1 p.m. during BCMFest’s Dayfest (January 9): That’s when The Kelly Girls and òran mór will lead a good hour’s worth of sing-along songs.
This’ll be the BCMFest debut for The Kelly Girls (Aisling Keating, Nancy Beaudette, Christine Hatch and Theresa Gerene), who are based in the far western suburbs and have played at local places like The Bull Run Restaurant, Waxy O’Connor’s Pub and Main Street Market & Cafe, as well as the Williamstown Fair in Ontario (the oldest annual fair in Canada) and aboard the Nova Star Cruise Ship running from Portland, Me., to Nova Scotia. So they know a thing or two about keeping people entertained, as this video clip shows. Oh, and in case you might wonder: No, they don’t have anything to do with the famous temp agency — but they have a nice little tribute to the “other” Kelly Girls on their website.
òran mór — the duo of Peter Hale and Dave Hallowell — are back for a third time at BCMFest. While they’re no strangers to the Boston area, you’re more likely to find them up north a ways, at places like the Ri Ra in Portsmouth, NH, where they are a Monday night fixture. Dave started out playing blues and R&B, but over time gravitated into folk/acoustic music and eventually Irish/Celtic material, with some guidance by people like David Surette, Ed Gerhard and Randal Bays. Peter came from a family with strong Irish roots — “Nancy Whiskey” was the first song with a chorus he learned (at age 6), he says, “other than something from ‘Sesame Street'” — and later on took an interest in singers like Luke Kelly, Christy Moore and Dick Gaughan. Here’s a sampling of Peter and Dave.
Mind you, you don’t have to sing along during this set — but why wouldn’t you want to?