Internationally acclaimed traditional Irish band Lúnasa will perform at Stuart’s Opera House Friday night. (Submitted)

Internationally Lauded Lúnasa Headed to Stuart’s March 10

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March 10, internationally lauded Irish music outfit Lúnasa is headed to Stuart’s Opera House in Nelsonville.

Turn back the clock some 20 years, and most likely none of the band’s members could have guessed that they would be touring all around the world with a band that they essentially thought would be a one-time collaboration.

20 years ago, traditional Irish music group Lúnasa was formed to simply fit the bill for a six-week tour of Australia.

The outfit’s members are all very active musicians, and before the group was performing internationally and recording critically acclaimed albums, they were working, for the most part, on other artistic ventures. Current members Trevor Hutchison, Kevin Crawford, Ed Boyd, Colin Farrell and Cillian Vallely still stay busy with their various projects outside of Lúnasa.

After the enormous success of their first Australian tour, they decided to get together the following year and pull off a three-month long tour, and to continue in the same spirit from there on out.

“We decided to make a go of it, and see what we could do,” said Hutchison, the group’s stand up bassist and one of its founding members. “And we’re still here, 20 years later.”

Hutchison was formerly a member of The Waterboys and a part of Sharon Shannon‘s band before his involvement with Lúnasa. Hutchison keeps up with The Waterboys, having been a part of the group’s celebration of the 25th anniversary of the group’s lauded album Fisherman’s Blues in 2013.

“We decided to make a go of it, and see what we could do, and we’re still here, 20 years later.” – Trevor Hutchison, stand up bassist and founding member of Lúnasa

Virtoso flutist Kevin Crawford has also been involved with a number of other projects, including the Moving Cloud, and a couple of solo projects that he tackled alongside fellow Lúnasa member Cillian Vallely.

Vallely has played with the likes of Bruce Springsteen, Tim O’Brien, Whirligig, Paddy O’Brien’s Chulrua and fiddler Seamus Connolly. He was also featured as the uilleann pipes soloist in the Boradway production of Riverdance.

Guitarist Ed Boyd is widely considered one of the finest guitars on the modern folk circuit, and he regularly plays with Kate Rusby and Cara Dillion. Boyd is also the founder of BBC-award winning group Flook.

Multi-instrumentalist Colin Farrell was born in Manchester, England, and was very musical from a young age. Farrell holds both All-Ireland and All-Britain titles in instruments that he plays. Farrell has crafted two solo albums, entitled Make a Note and On the Move.

Hutchison said that the band has been working on a new album for the past couple of months, and that fans can expect to see the fruits of the group’s labor sometime later this year.

“We are essentially a traditional music group, our music is very rooted in tradition; but we do experiment a good bit and we use accompaniment to drive the music and give it a different sort of shape,” said Hutchison in response to a question that highlighted the fact that the outfit is often only simply described as a traditional Irish music band. “Our trick is to really work up the accompaniment and I think it helps make the music a bit more accessible to people who don’t understand the music.”

Lúnasa is performing at Stuart’s Opera House on March 10 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door, and available through Stuart’s website or by calling their box office at 740-753-1924.