WHILE Billy McComiskey wasn't at the recently completed Fleadh Cheoil na hEireann in Tullamore, Co. Offaly last weekend, his son Sean was and competed in the Senior All-Ireland Ceili Band competition with the Old Bay Ceili Band. The Baltimore-based band was the only American band competing, and they were all inspired by their mentor McComiskey. They didn't place but played well according to the web cast that I heard. One of their band members, Joshua Dukes came away with a second place in accompaniment in the senior category.
Other U.S. winners garnering gold, silver or bronze were Dylan Foley (first/fiddle); Maeve Flanagan (third/fiddle); Sarah Hale (third/whistle); Lillian Reasor (third/harp); Lisa Farber (first/war pipes); Jake Feerick (second/accompaniment); Josh Dukes (second/accompaniment); Siobhan Parnow (second/flute slow airs) and in the Grupai Cheoil competition, St. Cecelia (Acosta School of Music) got a second in 12-15 age group and Aisling Cheoil (Irish Musicians Association Chicago) also took a second in the 15-18 age group.