Shandrum Ceili Band - CD Launch - The Dawn

A Taste Of What You Missed At The Launch of ‘The Dawn’ CD

This beautifully written article was kindly emailed to us by Martina Venneman, a longtime supporter, who travelled from Galway to be at our launch. These are her words.

On Saturday 6th May, The Shandrum Céilí Band launched their first album with a free concert in the beautiful St. Mary’s Church in Buttevant. The capacity crowd had begun to file in an hour before the gig was to start, and by 8:30pm every available seat in the church was filled by family, friends and supporters from near and far.

After a warm and heartfelt introduction by Fr. Baker, and much applause from the estimated 300-strong crowd gently packed into the church pews and upper balconies, the 10 members of the band took their places and set off with reels played at a spectacular speed and with marvellous energy, with the depth of sound and tight musicianship we are accustomed to from this band immediately apparent from the first note.

We were treated to many sets of tunes during the concert, and a variety of rhythms including polkas, jigs and reels, as well as quadrilles and marches. With the backdrop of the enormous and beautiful intricate stained-glass church window, we heard many of the wonderful tracks from their album “The Dawn“. Over the course of the concert band member Timmy Collins explained the background to the band name, the history of this All-Ireland winning band, the composers of the tunes, and introduced the 10 band members.

Band leader Alan Finn has written comprehensive sleeve notes for each track on the album, detailing the origin of the tunes including a set of Quadrilles which were perhaps less familiar to the audience but equally uplifting and well-received, and met with the same rapturous applause that erupted at the end of every set. These Quadrilles come from a manuscript compiled in the early 20th century by John ‘Boss’ Murphy from the local Churchtown area.

Continue reading below.


The enthusiasm of the audience often compelled Timmy to pause and wait for the applause to recede before introducing the next part of the concert. As well as hearing numerous wonderful and lively tunes, played with the delicacy and precision of delivery familiar to fans of the band, the programme also included excellent performances by the Boherbue junior set-dancers, and young sean-nós dancer Cian Broderick (the lady beside me commented in awe “he must have the fastest feet in Ireland!”). One of the highlights of the concert was a song performed by John Naughton, father of band member Ger Naughton who plays drums, but who played bouzouki as part of the wonderful accompaniment by the band to John’s tender rendition of “Red is the Rose”.

The Dawn CD is now heading to every corner of the globe.

At one point, a group of 5 young fiddle players joined the band, and added the richness of harmonies to a set of waltzes. The audience could be seen swaying gently from side to side, perhaps cast under a spell by the beautiful music and arrangement. After a deserved standing ovation, the band played an encore of reels, and a moving version of Amhrán na bhFiann to finish the evening on a complete and rousing note! It was a wonderful, inspiring concert, showcasing the dedication and exceptional talent of this group of hard working musicians. The quality and energy of their music is successfully captured on “The Dawn“.

The Shandrum Céilí Band - CD launch event

New CD From The Shandrum Céilí Band Is Sure To Get Your Toes Tapping

Debut Album ‘The Dawn’ is finally here

The Shandrum Céilí Band is proud to announce the eminent arrival of their debut album ‘The Dawn’. The eagerly awaited new CD takes its name from one of the reels which features on the album.

The Dawn CD - The Shandrum Céilí Band

The Dawn – CD Cover

Between them they have nearly 200 years of experience in playing traditional Irish music and dozens of medals at all levels, in Fleadh, Scór, Siansa Gael Linn and others. Indeed, a little-known fact is that many of them are set dancers themselves, some even winning titles at All-Ireland level. They understand the dancers’ need for lively rhythmic music. The band has a dedicated following across the country and even the world.

The Shandrum Céilí Band were in existence from the 1950s to the 1970s and, with their blessing, the current band was established in December 2014. They are based in North Cork but can regularly appear in almost any county playing for set dancers. They entered the history books in 2015 for being one of the only bands ever to win an All-Ireland Senior Céilí Band title in their first year competing. They went on the following year to do it again making them the only band from Cork to win it twice.

Their loyal fans have been asking for a CD on their Facebook Page and at céilithe for the past couple of years.

Band leader Alan Finn said:

People were asking us at céilís where they could buy our music. We had nothing to offer them. We also had requests on Social Media from the Irish Diaspora. Finally, we decided to answer the challenge and record the CD. Once we started it felt like exactly the right decision.

The CD will be officially launched in Buttevant Church on 6th May 2017 at 8.30pm, with family, friends and fans in attendance. This is a free event and open to everyone. The CD will be available to buy on the night and from the band themselves at various events in the future. It’s now available to Pre-Order from their website and can be shipped anywhere in the world.

On this new CD the ten-piece band reprises some of their winning arrangements; it’s quite simply traditional Irish music at its very best. From toe-tapping jigs and reels to tuneful waltzes, this album is unmissable.