Please get in touch if you’d like to book Paddy or any of his bands to speak or teach or play, or would like to set up a literary program or event featuring Paddy and/or his wife, novelist Erin Hart (see below), or any combination of the above. E-mail is a good way to make contact, but being old school, he really prefers to talk details over the phone. A short listing of available programs follows.
Concerts / Celebrations
Paddy has played concerts at hundreds of venues ranging from the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., to the International Festival of Traditional Arts in Québec, to the ICONS festival in Boston, to the Calumet Theater in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, to the Piper’s Hut Concert Series in Urbana, Illinois, to Milwaukee Irish Fest, to the International Accordion Festival in Houston, Texas. He’s also played countless gigs at folk clubs, folk festivals, arts festivals, libraries, concert halls, cultural centers and celebrations large and small, all over North America and Europe. For information on the various musical groups available, see Bands. For a partial list of past performances, please see Paddy’s CV.
Paddy offers several different kinds of workshops and lectures, some specifically for intermediate to advanced accordion players, and others for players of any instrument interested in accessing his great repertoire, or Irish traditional music and its history, including a special workshop/lecture called Reaching for the Draíocht: Exploring Irish Traditional Music. For more detail, see Workshops.
Words and Music
Paddy does custom-made cultural events for libraries, community centers, and Irish studies programs. He can offer short readings from his memoir, THE ROAD FROM CASTLEBARNAGH and talk about growing up in the traditional culture of rural Ireland. He can read a few of his poems about the older generation of traditional musicians from whom he learned, and talk about Gathering for Posterity: The Paddy O’Brien Tune Collection. Or if a more general history is what’s required there’s From Pipes and Harps to Digital Downloads: The History of Irish Traditional Music. And of course there’s always a bit of music… For more information, see Words and Music.
These multi-day residencies can help whole communities of session players and others to delve deeper into the secret notes of Irish traditional music. The setting is informal, with Paddy chatting and playing tunes with people, and sharing stories and many interesting versions and settings that he has gathered over the past five decades. For more details, see Community Residencies.
Paddy O’Brien & Erin Hart
Paddy often does multimedia book events with his wife, Erin Hart, who writes archaeological crime novels set in the mysterious Irish boglands. Words, music, and images come together in a powerful evocation of the landscape and atmosphere of Ireland. For more on these programs, see Paddy O’Brien & Erin Hart.