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Inspired By Chance

Goitse are..
Aine McGeeney: Fiddle/vocals/Glockenspiel
Colm Phelan:Bodrhan/Percussion
Conal O'Kane: Guitars
James Harvey: Banjo/Mandolin
Tadhg O'Meachar: Piano/Piano Accordion

*Goitse (Go-with-cha) is an informal Gaelic Irish greeting meaning ‘come here'.

"Goitse have a unique personality which is manifested in their music which I really love." - Donal Lunny


The multi-award-winning quintet Goitse , was forged in the white-hot creative crucible of Limerick University's Irish World Academy. Recently crowned Live Ireland's ‘Trad group of the Year', Chicago Irish American News' ‘Group of the Year', as well as winning the prestigious ‘Freiburger International Leiter 2016' award in Germany, they have made a name for themselves as one of the most sought after bands amongst connoisseurs of Irish Traditional music. Their third album, Tall Tales and Misadventures, has received rave reviews as the band continues to take the traditional Irish music scene by storm.

Hot off the press, 'Inspired By Chance' is the fourth and latest studio album released by the band Goitse. The album reflects all of the unexpected inspirations that have brought the band to where they are now. Self-produced, and recorded with Seán Horsman in Ephemeral Studios in County Galway, this CD definitely reflects a certain maturing that the band has gone through. With a good mix of songs, traditional melodies, as well as more contemporary Irish music, Goitse's clever arrangements meet rocking tunes and sweet songs in this latest album.

The three songs on the album are beautifully sung by Áine McGeeney. An Irish language song, An Bonnán Buí, tells the story of an alcoholic who comes across a yellow bittern who died of thirst by a frozen pond. The alcoholic draws parallels between the deceased bird's struggle and his own, but in the end declares that there is not much point abstaining from drinking now, as there will be none to have after his death.

The Hills of Sweet Lislea, penned by Finbar Magee, the composer of My Belfast Love from Goitse's 'Transformed' album, is a song inspired by the letters sent home to their loved ones by World War One soldiers, while Ireland's Green Shore is an old 'Aisling' or vision song.

As far as the melody tracks go, there are two cracking sets of reels in Banjoman Button and First-Class Bananas. The latter was inspired by an unexpected free upgrade to first class that had the band very excited until they found the only perk to be a free banana for the journey!

Perhaps Serendipity sums up the album's sentiment in a way. The first tune on the track came about when James Harvey, the banjo player with the band, started playing a riff backstage at a concert, while Áine started to improvise melodies over the top which eventually moulded its way into a tune. The track then launches into a contemporary tune composed by the fantastic fiddler Tola Custy, before jumping into a traditional polka from the Goodman collection. Jigs, slip jigs, slides, flings, clan marches and three-twos make up the wide variety of tunes on the rest of the tracks on the album to great effect. Overall, lively yet mature tune arrangements and a mix of both sentimental and uptempo songs result in a mature, powerful, and rocking sound to this album.

"The album reflects all of the unexpected inspirations that we’ve had over the past few years. Things like James just riffing away and him and Aine writing a tune around it, or that we happened to hear Donal playing the Requiem.

Their distinctive sound lies in the quality of their own compositions interspersed with traditional tunes from Ireland and abroad, which make each set entertaining and unique. Laying the foundations for the music are World and All-Ireland Bodhrán champion Colm Phelan and Conal O'Kane, who is fast making a name for himself as one of the finest guitarists of this generation.
The gripping rhythm section sets a powerful drive for the music while the sweet, charismatic voice of Áine Mc Geeney draws audiences into the music in a way very few performers can achieve. Her energetic style of fiddle playing is complimented by 7-time All-Ireland banjo champion James Harvey. His ability to transcend genres, combined with his unparalleled technical ability is a joy to behold. Bridging the gap between melody and accompaniment is the piano and piano accordionist, Tadhg Ó Meachair. The Dublin native is renowned for his unique approach to bass work and accompaniment, while also having picked up national awards for his melody playing. Lace up your dancing shoes and get ready for a night of wonderful music and fast paced fun with Goitse.

Also available from Copperplate: Goitse: Tall Tales & Misadventures

More detail at

01/08/17     Schlüchtern     KUKI Zelt     Germany
02/08/17     Hamm     Musikpavillon im Kurhausgarten     Germany Time: 8:00pm.
03/08/17     Mainz     SWR, Kultur im Foyer (Live Mitschnitt)     Germany: Time: 7:00pm.
04/08/17     Königslutter     Sommernacht am Kaiserdom     Germany: Time: 8:00pm.
05/08/17     Königslutter     Sommernacht am Kaiserdom     Germany: Time: 8:00pm.
06/08/17     Neu – Ulm     Musikschule     Germany Time: 8:00pm.
08/08/17     Allensbach     Open Air am See     Germany: Time: 8:00pm.
09/08/17     Balingen     Kulturfestival, Marktplatz     Germany: Time: 7:00pm.
10/08/17     Oberndorf/Neckar     Courtyard of the Klosterkirche:     Germany
11/08/17     Herten     Glashaus     Germany
12/08/17     Pronstorf     Schleswig Holstein Musikfestival, Musikfest auf dem Lande, Kuhstall (Folknight)     Germany
13/08/17     Neuhäusel     Ev. Kirche     Germany: Time: 5:00pm. Venue phone: 02602 950830.

18/08/17     Milwaukee     Milwaukee Irish Festival     United States
19/08/17     Milwaukee     Milwaukee Irish Festival     United States
20/08/17     Milwaukee     Milwaukee Irish Festival     United States
22/08/17     Chicago     Chief O Neill’s     United States: Time: 7:30pm. Buy Tickets
25/08/17     Peoria, Illinois     Peoria Erin Feis     United States
26/08/17     Peoria, Illinois     Peoria Erin Feis     United States
27/08/17     Peoria, Illinois     Peoria Erin Feis     United States
06/09/17     Colebroke, NH     North Woods     United States
08/09/17     Syracuse, NY     Syracuse Irish Festival     United States
09/09/17     Syracuse, NY     Syracuse Irish Festival     United States
10/09/17     Frenchville, PA     Oak Mountain Hideaway Concerts     United States
15/09/17     Muskegon, MI     Michigan Irish festival     United States
16/09/17     Muskegon, MI     Michigan Irish festival     United States
17/09/17     Muskegon, MI     Michigan Irish festival     United States

23/09/17     Zug     Akkordeon Festival, Switzerland
28/10/17     Laois     Dunamaise Arts Centre, Portlaoise, Ireland + Special Guests


Track 1: The Sweet Hills of Lislea

Track 2:Serendipity

Track 3: Art O'Keeffe's. Chance

Track Listing

  1. Odds

  2. Banjoman Button

  3. The Hills of Sweet Lislea

  4. Serendipity

  5. First Class Bananas

  6. Ireland's Green Shore

  7. Houdini

  8. An Bonann Bui (The Yellow Bittern)

  9. Inspired Split

  10. Chance

Press Reviews

*Freiburg international Leiter Music award 2016*

*Trad Group of the Year 2015* - Live Ireland Awards

* Group of the Year 2015* - Chicago Irish American News awards


   Songlines Music Magazine  Oct 16
Top of the World
Goitse: Inspired by Chance    *****

Fourth album from scarily talented young Irish group

Their 2014 album Tall Tales and Misadventures saw Limerick quintet up the ante with a set marked by variety, subtlety and pin-sharp playing. Inspired by Chance finds them picking up where they left off in fine style. Even more to the fore is James Harvey's dancing banjo and Aine McGeeney's cotton-soft vocals. She's heard on three contrasting songs The poetic visions of ‘lreland's Green Shore' are lent a pleasingly brisk and bright treatment, while the bittersweet imprecations of ‘An Bonann Bui‘ are set against her own baleful fiddle and Conal O‘Kane's tentative guitar.

But it's her touching cover of Finbar Magee's World War 1 lament “The Hills of Sweet Lislea' that steals the show, with Tadhg O Meachair’s plangent piano prominent in the haunting accompaniment.

Elsewhere, the ensemble revels in tightly knit virtuosity, playing with enormous gusto in the delightfully tongue-in-cheek “First-Class Banana" and 'lnspired',  a set of tunes written by Irish legends Tommy Peoples and Josephine Keegan.

Martin Brunsden's double bass adds a darker grain and weight to several tracks. Despite the album’s title, there's nothing left to chance here: it‘s an album on which Goitse step into a ripe maturity. Michael Quinn

The Living Tradition Aug/Sept 16
Album number four from this Irish acoustic band. and it's a wee cracker. Aine McGeeney is a fine vocalist with a subtlety at phrasing that is a delight to hear, particularly on The Hills Of Sweet Lislea and Ireland‘s Green Shore. Her contributions on fidde are also vital to the tune sets especially Her fellow musicians include Tadhg O'Meachair on piano and accordion and James Harvey on banjo who drive the tune sets along with vigour. My particular favourite set is entitled Banjoman Button, which is Harvey’s nickname, and on which he shines like a musical beacon. Throughout, the guitar playing of Conal O’Kane gives the sets a backbone, along with the rhythmic foundation of Colm Phelan on bodhran.
An Bonnan Bui is an interesting tale of a yellow bittern who is dying of the thirst due to a frozen pond, and an alcoholic who encounters said bird and considers his own relationship with drinking (but ultimately decides against abstinence as there will be no such pleasures in the afterlife).
The closing two sets, from which the album gains its title, round off this album nicely, and again showcase James Harvey's fab banjo expertise, and Meachair's piano accordion equally.
Half of the tracks feature guest Martin Brunsden on double bass and he fills the space brilliantly.
Mostly performing in US ans mainland Europe, I haven't seen Goitse live, But would happily travel a distance to see them. It's looking to be a first class year for Irish acoustic music. I'm more than happy with that. Bring 'em on.. Grem Devlin

  R2  Music Magazine July/Aug 16   Inspired By Chance  ****
l do like a bit of wince-inducing wordplay, and so any band that refers to its youthful-looking banjo-player as ‘Banjoman Button' has me on-side immediately.
More pertinently, this is also the name of one of the sets of reels that shines in this latest collection from the vibrant Irish quintet.
Throughout,  James Harvey's banjo is an important textural feature,  providing a bridge between Colm Phelan‘s lively percussion and the front line melody instruments.
Of these, Aine McGeeney's  fiddle is most prominent, offering up the instrument's full expressive range,  from pensive restraint to hell-raising bravado, with Tadhg O'Meachair's accordion adding details, breath and colour, and Conal O'Kane’s guitar drawing the elements together.
Amidst the blazing instrumentals, McGeeney offers three songs, including  the uplifting, visionary 'Ireland's Green Shore', which is reminiscent of Dervish, Influences are definitely worn on the sleeve in a tune set drawing from the repertoires of Tommy Peoples and Josephine Keegan, but it’s the distinct personality with which Goitse imbue their influences, that makes the band such a pleasure to listen to. Oh, and if you were wondering, it's pronounced Gwi-cha. Oz Hardwick

Irish Music Magazine July 16

A fourth album from a hand I’m soon going to have to stop describing as young - they've been around for AGES at this point! Inspired by Chance starts as it means to continue, with deep growling fiddle and banjo. followed up on surprisingly delicate piano box. both tracks backed by solid guitar and drum. The line—up is unchanged from previous recordings, and the band's established chemistry keeps things tight and exciting.  Aine McGeeney plays fiddle and whistle, with James Harvey on banjo and Tadhg O Meachair on keys. Conal O’Kane's guitars and Calm Phelan‘s percussion complete the Goitse sound.

Aine‘s high sweet voice delivers three songs. two traditional and one written recently by Finbar Magee. all three are powerful and moving, high themes of human dignity and suffering brought to a personal level.
On the instrumental side, almost half the material here is the band's own compositions, and they fit comfortably alongside tunes by Tommy Peoples, Paddy O’Brien, Josephine Keegan and Tola Custy.

There’s a handful of older traditional melodies too, mostly clustered at the end of the album. Reels and jigs are the order of the day, with a high tempo throughout: First-Class Bananas is a typical example, driving rhythms with tasty modern reels thrown over the top, played with flair and feeling. Caillte provides a gentler moment. a lovely slip-jig by Tadhg, building to a Patsy Touhey version of Rip The Calico the final track is an intriguing melody of a fling l know as The Lad with the Plaidie,  the Bothy Band slide Rosie Finns, and the Sliabh Luachra classic Art O’Keefe's. There is at least one track from Inspired by dance on the Goitse website, so check it out. Alex Monaghan Premiere: Goitse’s fourth album, Inspired By Chance
Brace your self! Here comes Goitse’s fourth album, Inspired By Chance, and the hugely popular group is going to have the world premiere right here on LiveIreland this Sunday, May 1. Cuts from the new album will be featured on The Bill & Imelda Show, beginning at 18:00 GMT. Goitse is one of the most popular groups here on LI, and with good reason. They are a world-experienced and wonderful quintet. They have won the LiveIreland Traditional Group of the Year Award, joining several other international awards. We have had a sneak peek at Inspired By Chance (we love the title.) It is as good as you could possibly hope. Goitse combines a real understanding of trad and Irish music with a deeply felt and evidenced energy. A top group, offered in the worldwide, simultaneous premiere that LI alone can offer to the real music aficionado. Do not miss it. Goitse rules!

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