Article by Robert Howell
From Lafayette, Louisiana, multi-instrumentalist Beth Patterson is foremost a player of the eight- and ten-stringed Irish bouzoukis (adaptations of a traditional Greek instrument). Known for her razor wit and musical versatility, her performances are chock-full of drive, savage energy, and passion, laced with humor and rapport with her listeners, dishing out an eclectic repertoire of original and traditional songs. She integrates her quirky, progressive sound with Celtic music and other ethnic styles, resulting in her own sound she dubs “SWAP” (Songwriter/World/Acoustic/Progressive).
She began her career in her early teens as a classical oboist and a Cajun bass player (with the required teenage heavy metal stint on the side), but not truly belonging to any of these, set out to create her own niche when she was adopted by a stray bouzouki. After moving to New Orleans, she began to play the circuit, initially intending to do the folky thing, but accepted gigs of all types left and right because no one told her that they shouldn’t be played on the bouzouki. (Not to mention that it was a sin.)
Beth later fled to Ireland, studying ethnomusicology at University College Cork, where she explored the music of Ireland, West Africa, India, Indonesia, and the Caribbean, and began to experiment with fusions of these world gems with her musical old flames. This finally rendered her with the mind of a prog rocker, the heart of a world music-lover…and let’s just skip the part about her soul.
You owe it to yourself to check out the whole biography at her website.
Raised in Galway’s Gaeltacht on the rugged west coast of Ireland, Patrick is part of a select group of people whose native language is Gaelic. With a professional music career that has spanned over three decades, he is acknowledged as one of the truly fine practitioners of Irish mandolin and harmonica.
Patrick is currently the resident musician at the Irish Pub on Washington Street in Lewisburg, West Virginia.
Download MP3: “Adner’s Fancy”
Hometown: New Orleans, LA and Lewisburg, WV
Similar Artists: Adam Hebert, Begley and Cooney, The Poor Clares
Robert Howell writes for the Celtic Music Magazine, the Voice of indie Celtic Music online. It features Celtic CD reviews, articles, and free Celtic MP3s since 2000. We’re changing the way you hear Celtic music. Subscribe to our podcast and monthly newsletter at www.celticmp3s.com.