Saturday, 22 September 2007

Continental bands at Longford festival

The sixth Johnny Keenan Banjo Festival took place at Longford, Ireland, on 13-16 September, with its successful formula combining Irish music with bluegrass, old-time, and other Americana. Among the impressive lineup (see here or the festival website), a big impression was made by two bands from the Continent of Europe - the Ranch House Favourites (NL), now on their third time at Longford, and the Lluis Gomez Quartet (E).

Lluis, one of the founders of the Al Ras Festival in Spain, was featured in the Sept. 2005 issue of Banjo News Letter. His tune 'James' can be heard on the BNL website. He also contributed an article, 'The banjo in Espa├▒a', to the December 2006 BNL, with a tab of his version of the Chick Corea tune 'Spain'.

Condolences go to Bertie van der Heijdt of the Ranch House Favourites, whose father died during the Festival, after the band's first concert appearance. Bertie's place on the upright bass was taken by Sean McKerr of Lurgan, Co. Armagh.