Where to Find Good Celtic Music
If you’re interested in Celtic or Irish music, there are some things you need to figure out. First of all, there’s some weird terms involved. For example, it took me forever to figure out that Bainseo means banjo. And Cruit (pronounced as krit) means harp. If you’re really interested, you can use this website for some of the terms.
The big problem for me as a Celtic music fan (who doesn’t live in a major city, at least) is that it isn’t always easy to get access to great music. However, as long as I have an internet connection, I’m set. I can stream music straight from Glasgow from a UK streaming service. It’s a pretty cool site. I especially like their Album of the Week, where they feature a CD and do an interview with the group. I can really get a feel for the music that way.
There’s also a live365 app I can listen to on my phone. They have—get this—49!!!! different Celtic stations for you to pick from. They’ve got everything from dance to traditional pub style music to Celtic rock. Some of the stations are free, and some aren’t. My favorite is the Celt Rock station. Aside from the great music, they also have a fairly active forums site that can be found here. I especially like their music forum and the video library. I can find a lot of music there and if you’ve got some time, I definitely recommend it. To be honest, it’s kind of a black hole of atime suck, though, so consider yourself warned.
The absolute best place to find good music, though, is by seeing it live. Bands are usually pretty good about posting tour dates and ticket information but what if you don’t know enough groups, or if you’re inhibited by geography like I am? I can’t imagine what it’d be like to have a huge amount of venues near me like in London or LA or something. I have to actively look for stuff if it isn’t playing right at McGuire’s. So aside from getting in with the people who know at an Irish pub type place that has live music, the best thing I’ve found is searching fora Celtic, Scottish, or Highland Festival that’s nearby. You’ll get to see more bands at once that way, which is always fine by me! I’ve been to the Panama City Scottish Festival and Highland Games before, and it is a pretty good time. I haven’t been able to find much info on it for this coming year, so I’ve made other plans. If you’re interested in that, you can go on the Association of Scottish Games and Festivals and search by your state. If you don’t see your state listed, don’t worry. There’s also an angelfire site where you can look up Irish/Celt festivals, so there are even more opportunities. My last suggestion is to find a really good St. Patrick’s Day parade near you. They usually have pipe and drum bands marching, but if it is a big enough parade, they might have a show or two. I used to make my parents take me to Santa Rosa Beach to see the St. Patrick’s Day parade, and I got to listen to some music that way, too.
It takes a little work, but it’s sooo worth it!