IT was over 20 years ago that some Irish all-stars banded together as "The Legends of Irish Music" for a once off tour. It was intended to build a super group out of the remains of early super groups like the Bothy Band, Planxty and DeDanann in the trad scene as fiddler Kevin Burke, singer/bouzouki player Andy Irvine and box player Jackie Daly formed the founding nucleus along with guitarist Arty McGlynn as they then became known as Patrick Street.
Subsequently talented artists like piper Declan Masterson, Bill Whelan (of Riverdance fame) and James Kelly weaved in and out while they produced seven albums for the Green Linnet Record label (www.greenlinnet.com).
For the past decade, House Band and Battlefield Band guitarist Ged Foley has rounded out the quartet of Burke, Daly and Irvine, with multi-instrumental genius John Carty now joining the fray while accordion legend Daly has dropped off the traveling squad.
The veteran performers have long been admired and respected for their steady contributions as musicians who have inspired their peers and the next generation and for the quality of their performances.
Proving that they "Never Tire of the Road" (one of Andy Irvine's own song compositions) the quartet is taking to the U.S. highways and byways again to promote their latest recording On the Fly on Kevin Burke's new Loftus label (www.loftus.com).
Produced by Ged Foley and his Patrick Street mates, it contains 12 cuts that include two tracks with the departing Daly, who bid adieu officially at the Return to Camden Town festival in London a few weeks ago.
It also marks the first recording with new member Carty, whose versatility and solid trad credentials on the fiddle, flute and banjo will compensate somewhat for the loss of one of Ireland's finest box players in Daly, who evidently did tire of the road.
Carty's addition ensures that the traditional licks will be steadfastly delivered especially when he pairs up with Kevin Burke for some Sligo styling on double fiddles.
Their Northeast schedule is as follows - November 14 in Philadelphia at the Calvary Center for Culture and Community (www.crossroadsconcerts.org). November 15 at the Fairfield Theatre Company in Connecticut at 7:30 p.m. alongside the Fairfield Metro North Station hosted by the Shamrock Irish Traditional Music Society (www.shamrockirishmusic.com).
The following night they appear at the Julian Studley Theater in
New Paltz (www. unisonarts.org). They finish in western Massachusetts at Memorial Hall on Saturday, November 17 at 7:30 p.m. in Shelburne Falls (www.hilltownmusic.com).