Sometimes the Irish trad cosmos lines up for something special and a new group or a solo artist appears. It is instant and hits like a musical storm. Connla.
Hailing from the cities of Armagh and Derry and are made up of Ciara McCafferty (vocals), Ciaran Carlin (Flute/Whistles) Paul Starrett (Guitar) Emer Mallon (Harp) and Conor Mallon (Uilleann Pipes/Whistles).
Labelled as the Hottest New Group out of Northern Ireland, (Chicago Irish American News) Connla have been quickly making an impact on the folk/traditional scene. Songlines magazine made Connla their “must see act” for the tour of the UK and stated “A band this young shouldn’t be this good”. Their sensitive and innovative arrangements of traditional and modern folk songs and tunes, have helped them create a sound which is very identifiable as Connla. They have toured all around Europe and North America with more tours in 2018/2019 scheduled. Irish Music Magazine stated; “Consider this your early warning system, there is something serious on the horizon and that creative storm is Connla” (Irish Music Magazine)
The group is a full mix of musical knowledge, training and performance experience unheard of in a group this young. All are close friends and/or family who go way back together in the Northern musical scene. Each has won several performance awards. The resulting music is satisfyingly complex, yet directly and easily accessible. This is that rare group that is musically attractive to the experienced trad purist, as well as the music fan who knows nothing of the music. There is the mix in all of their music of great lift to the music and deep insights in the songs, all coupled with top musicianship and taste. Truth be told, it may never have been pulled off before by a group this young. Yesterday and tomorrow’s trad today. Here comes Connla!
2019 Album of the Year Live Ireland
2018 Concert of the Year – Livvies Awards – Live Ireland
Awards for “River Waiting:
2017 Songlines #1 essential Irish album
2017 ‘Vocal/Instrumental album of the year’ from Live Ireland ‘Livies’ Award: http://liveireland.com/liveireland-music-awards-2017/
2017 ‘Vocal/Instrumental album of the year’ from Top TIR award – Irish Amercian News: http://www.irishamericannews.com/pdf/2016/ian_0117r.pdf
2016 – Best of the year Awards ‘Best new sound’ from Chicago Irish American News – Jack Baker: http://www.irishamericannews.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=6591:piping-it-in-best-of-the-year-awards-2016&catid=150:piping-it-in&Itemid=403
Delighted to add these to the other awards the E.P:
2016 ‘Best New Group’ from Live Ireland ‘Livies’ Award.
2016 ‘New Group of the Year’ from Top TIR award – Irish American News.