Keith Donald | Chairman
Keith Donald was born in County Derry in 1945. He is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin and University College Dublin, and has studied at University of Minnesota and the Royal Irish Academy of Music.
A founding member of the critically acclaimed Irish instrumental group Moving Hearts, Donald has played sax with people as diverse as Van Morrison, The Dubliners, Zoot Sims, Christy Moore, Vusi Mahlahsela, Gerry Mulligan and Máire Breatnach. Keith has played at or organized gigs for Burma Action Ireland, Amnesty, Greenpeace, gay rights, the Anti-Apartheid Movement, Women´s Aid and many other worthwhile causes. Over the years he has composed music for the BBC, Channel Four, BFI, RTE, Neil Jordan´s Angel, plays by Brian Friel, Damian Gorman and Frank McGuinness and he wrote the music for the BBCNI drama United which won a BAFTA in 1997.
Through previous membership of the Boards of the IRMA Trust, the Temple Bar Music Centre, the IBEC Music Group, plus having served on Forte, the advisory group set up by the first Minister for Arts and Culture, he has developed a comprehensive understanding of music and the arts in Ireland and overseas. He currently sits on the Board of the Mechanical Copyright Protection Society of Ireland (MCPSI). As a performer, Keith has returned to his first love, the clarinet and plays jazz gigs in Ireland and abroad.
Songwriters and Composers
I began my career as a folk singer in Dublin in 1971. My professional debut was as the opening act for Planxty’s first Irish tour. In the ensuing years I moved through different phases and forms of music, from Trad, Country, Rock, and Contemporary, and toured the UK, Europe, and the US in a variety of different guises: doubling with Andy Irvine as a folk act on the European circuit in the early eighties, as lead singer with Moving Hearts, and lead singer/writer with Rusty Old Halo. The tours were interspersed with album releases (fourteen in total). In the late eighties I concentrated on song writing, capturing two BMI awards (1 million Radio plays and Most Played Country Song in the US in 1992) for my song ‘Past the Point of Rescue’.
Throughout the eighties I picked up two Hot Press and two National Entertainment awards. In 1985 I formed my own publishing company, Doghouse Songs and oversaw the collection of royalties until signing with Peer Music London in 2001. Wearing a non-musical hat, I spent seven years on the Executive and Board of the Kilkenny School Project while my daughters were in attendance; four of those years as Chairperson of the Board. In 2008 I did a course in Psychotherapy, qualifying in 2012. Also, last year I launched my project ‘Coming To A Village Near You’ on the John Murray show and to date have played over 25 community halls on a subscription basis. This project is ongoing. Presently, I am writing songs for a projected Country Music movie with New Decade Films, and preparing songs for my next album. My songs have been recorded by numerous artists: Moving Hearts, Christy Moore, Dolores Keane, Ronnie Drew, Mary Black, and Delbert McClinton. I continue to write and tour.
Máire Breatnach was born and raised in Dublin. Having studied classical violin at the College of Music (CDVEC) with Clara Greene, she was awarded the Arthur Darley Medal, and the Feis Ceoil’s Catterall Cup for concerto playing. Meantime, she was developing her interest in traditional fiddle-playing, receiving many awards at Gael-Linn’s Slógadh festivals, Scór and Oireachtas na Gaeilge.
She obtained BA and MA degrees in Irish at UCD, as well as a BMus, during which period she played in the RTÉ Symphony Orchestra, and held a lecturing position in the then Department of Irish Folklore, UCD. Máire lectured in the College of Music, DIT, before embarking on a freelance career in music. She has also studied in QUB and UL, where she gained a further MA, this time in ethnomusicology. Early performance ventures included participation in such groups as Blasket Sound, Killera and Méristem. Máire was the solo fiddler with the original “Riverdance”, and later toured with the first stage show built around it. She has also toured extensively abroad with various musicians, including Norland Wind in continental Europe. Máire has composed and recorded five solo albums: Angels’ Candles, The Voyage of Bran, Celtic Lovers, Dreams and Visions in Irish Song – Aislingí Ceoil and Cranna Ceoil / In Full Measure. She collaborated with Keith Donald for the 1999 disc The Calm After The Storm, a collection of Irish slow airs arranged for wind and strings by the two. Tarraing Téad / Pulling Strings, with Cormac De Barra (2010), is mainly focused on the music of the harpers, but also features traditional tunes arranged for strings by Cormac and Máire. On fiddle, viola, whistles, piano and keyboards, guitar and vocals, Máire has performed and recorded with Riverdance, Christy Moore, Alan Stivell, Ronan Keating, Moya Brennan, Phil Chevron, Sinead O’Connor, Bryan Adams, Altan, Sharon Shannon, Lúnasa, Mary Black, Mike Oldfield, Donovan, Dave Gilmour, Sarah Brightman, Gavin Friday, Nigel Kennedy, Donal Lunny, Dolores Keane, Ronnie Drew, Liam Ó Maonlaí, Ronan Hardiman and Bill Whelan.
As a record producer, she has worked with Sonny Condell, Johnny McEvoy, Jim McCann, The Black Family, Pádraigín Ní Uallacháin, Méav, Lasairfhíona Ní Chonaola, Macdara Ó Conaola and Finola Ó Siochrú. TV and film credits include Glenroe, Tinteán and Voyage (RTÉ), A Freezing Summer (Japan), Angela Mooney Dies Again, In The Name of the Father, The Secret of Roan Inish, Rob Roy and Moondance.
Máire has featured on two chart-topping albums, Tears of Stone (The Chieftains), which subsequently won a Grammy award, and Éist, for which she wrote the title song, a duet with Brian Kennedy.
She wrote a traditional/folk music column for the Irish language weekly newspaper Anois and later for the monthly magazine Comhar (2004-07). In 2006/07 she composed incidental music for over 40 children´s books in Irish (many of which she also narrated) published as CDs by Foras na Gaeilge.
Her first book, Vera agus a Veidhlín, a children´s musical story, illustrated by Robert Ballagh, was published in Dublin by An Gúm in 2008. Máire Breatnach is currently working on her sixth solo album.
Donagh Long has been writing and performing his own songs for the past 25 years. His songs have been covered both nationally and internationally by many major recording artists. Well known as a performer in his native Cork, he has worked closely with many leading musicians. These days, Donagh tends to devote more time to writing and producing than to live work.
Donagh´s songs have been covered by Mary Black, Dolores Keane, Mary Coughlan, Christy Moore, Frances Black, Dolly Parton, Linda Ronstadt & Emmylou Harris, Nancy Griffith, David Howard, John McDermott, Lynn Morris, John Wright, Susan McCann, Toni Caitlin, Aoife Ferry, Orla Fallon, Mae Robertson, Moonrakers, Deirdre Masterson, The Wells Family, Fiona Kennedy, Nathan Carter, Angus Lyon, Gerry Timlin and Bram Taylor.
In a world where the word star and the gift of talent are often devalued, Eleanor McEvoy is neither an overnight success nor a four-week wonder.
Her career began at the age of four when she took piano lessons, taking up violin at the age of eight. Upon finishing school, she attended Trinity College in Dublin where she studied music by day and worked in pit orchestras and music clubs by night. Eleanor graduated from Trinity and was accepted into the National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland where she worked for four years before finally taking the plunge to concentrate on her passion for songwriting.
After a long hard slog, she finally found success in 1992. It happened when one of her songs ‘Only a Woman´s Heart´ inspired the title for, and appeared on, the A Woman´s Heart anthology album. It has since gone on to become the best selling album in Irish history, staying in the Irish Top 10 for over a year.
Since then Eleanor has gone on to become an artist and performer known throughout the world. Her critically acclaimed canon of work spans seven albums, several singles and appearances on numerous compilation albums. She is today recognised as one of Ireland´s most successful female singer songwriters.
Charlie McGettigan started his musical career in the 1960s in various rock bands in Donegal. In 1973, Charlie formed the highly successful group Jargon, which went on to win the prestigious Letterkenny Folk Festival, following in the footsteps of bands like Clannad and Pumpkinhead.
Down the years, Charlie worked with artists like Maura O Connell and Eleanor Shanley, and released two solo albums — Songs of the Night and Charlie McGettigan — before joining forces with Paul Harrington and Brendan Graham to win the 1994 Eurovision Song Contest with ‘Rock n Roll Kids´. Charlie has since released the albums In Your Old Room, Family Matters and his current album, Stolen Moments. Charlie´s songs have been recorded by many artists including De Dannan, Mary and Frances Black, Ray Lynam, Daniel O´Donnell, Sandy Kelly and Hal Ketchum to name but a few.
These days, Charlie tours both in Ireland and abroad. He presents The Saturday Connection on Shannonside/Northern Sound Radio, a two hour programme where he previews live music and theatrical events, interviews guests e.g. Guy Clark, Kieran Goss, Frances Black, Jerry Douglas and Bela Fleck and plays mostly music produced in Ireland.
Charlie is a board member of The Dock Arts Centre in Carrick on Shannon.
Niall Toner is one of Ireland´s leading authorities on American Country Music, and has performed various styles of Bluegrass and Traditional Country Music with The Lee Valley String Band, The Sackville String Band, and Hank Halfhead and the Rambling Turkeys. He currently fronts his own three-piece acoustic outfit, the Niall Toner Band, with Clem O´Brien on guitar and Dick Gladney on string bass, performing all original songs and music.
His work has been recorded by many artists including Paddy Cole, The Nashville Bluegrass Band, Bill Wyman (the Rolling Stones), Albert Lee, The Fleadh Cowboys, Special Consensus, Eoin O´Riabhaig and Italy’s Red Wine, to name a few. Niall´s music has also been featured on the soundtrack of GTA IV, the 2nd.biggest-selling video game in history.
Niall was recently signed to a record deal in the USA with North Carolina based Pinecastle Records, and his first Album with them is due for release in September 2012.
Niall is also a broadcaster, and presents Roots Freeway on RTE Radio One. He also interviews songwriters about their craft, and these shows are broadcast on RTE under the banner Behind the Lines.
As well as serving on the IMRO Board, Niall is Chairman of the PR and Marketing Committee. He is married with five children and lives in rural Co.Carlow.
Brian Crosby is a founding member of Irish band Juniper and subsequently Bell X1 with whom he co-wrote four albums. In 2006, Crosby devised, curated and produced The Cake Sale, a band featuring an eclectic collective of musicians and writers created in order to raise funds for the charity Oxfam. Crosby also founded and still operates Oxfam Publishing, which publishes The Cake Sale´s catalogue. Brian now focuses on film scoring and has gained recognition for producing dark minimalist scores for a range of feature films, shorts and gallery installations.
Eddie Joyce began his adventure in the Irish music scene as a demo reviewer for Hot Press magazine in the early 1980s.
In 1984, Eddie set up Danceline, which started out as a live music venue and evolved into a record label and music publishing company committed to the cause of promoting and developing Irish songwriters and Irish acts. Danceline Records released albums by The Afternoons and Georgia, over 50 singles and numerous compilation albums.
Eddie was a founder member of the Jobs In Music and Fairplay for Airplay initiatives.
More recently, Eddie has served as an IMRO Board member and developed a general music consultancy service. Danceline Music continues to operate as a music publishing company.
Johnny Lappin has been an active in music since the 1960s.He moved into the business side of the industry in 1975. In 1979 he went into music publishing full time, and in 1980 was elected Secretary of the Music Publishers Association of Ireland (MPAI). He has been one of the key figures in Irish music publishing since; managing Clannad’s publishing interests during that band’s most successful period. In that role he gained invaluable experience of the worldwide music publishing industry. He astutely put that expertise to good use by establishing his own consultancy, and now has a roster of clients that includes several publishing companies and, over the years, has represented the creations of several renowned artists – including Aslan, Sharon Shannon, Blink, The Celtic Tenors, Rob Burke, Liam Reilly, Frances Black, Hazel O’Connor, Paddy Reilly and countless others. He currently heads up the publishing division of the Liffey Group of companies, the hugely successful stable that includes Celtic Woman & The High Kings. Lappin is currently secretary of the Music Publishers Association of Ireland (MPAI) and is also on the boards of both IMRO and MCPS Ireland Ltd. He also oversees the music publishing interests of MCD boss Denis Desmond’s Evolving Music Co which includes the highly successful duo Rodrigo y Gabriela, Ryan Sheridan, The Original Rude Boys, The Minutes and Funeral Suits, Leaders Of Men, to name a but few of their extensive writer roster. He is regularly called upon to contribute to panels, and to speak on radio programmes, to discuss key issues concerning intellectual property, copyright and music publishing.
After achieving a degree from Liverpool College Of Art, Lindsey began his music career in 1976 as a writer and musician with first Deaf School and then The Planets – recording a total of 5 albums and scoring a couple of minor hits.
In 1985 he moved into music publishing as professional manager with Warner/Chappell Music and was later appointed general manager of Go! Disc Music, where he worked with The Las and Norman Cook/Beats International. He joined Island Music as creative director and general manager in 1990, and was associated with The Beautiful South, Tricky and Massive Attack, and represented Irish acts such as U2, Hinterland and Gavin Friday. In 1995, he set up as an independent music supervisor. As a music consultant he established publishing companies for Robbie Williams´s management company and Massive Attack.
Based in Dublin since 2001, he has worked on the publishing front with Rodrigo y Gabriela and currently represents such diverse writers as score composer Niall Byrne, Mundy, Cathy Davey, Aslan, Chequerboard, Alphastates and Robotnik amongst others.
In addition to his publishing activities, Lindsey currently sits on the board of MCPS Ireland.
Michael O´Riordan was a major player in the success of Release Records in the late 1960s, when the Irish music scene was mainly dominated by that label and its unrivalled catalogue of showbands, ballad singers and cabaret acts. Since the advent of Ritz Records he has been an unrelenting campaigner for more use of all types of Irish music on radio and television. More recently he has concentrated on the publishing side of the business through his Emma and Rosette music publishing companies. O´Riordan has also devoted much of his time to servicing the music industry. He is both a director and committee member of IMRO and MCPS, served on the Music Board of Ireland and is currently president of the Music Publishers Association of Ireland.
Chairman of Windmill Lane Pictures Ltd. and Bord Scannan na hEireann/The Irish Film Board, James Morris is a graduate of Trinity CollegeDublin and afterwards trained as a Film Editor in London. He founded Windmill Lane Pictures and Windmill Lane Recording Studios on his return to Dublin. He led the Windmill Consortium to win the television franchise for TV3 in 1989.
In 1990 he founded The Mill — Film and TV Post Production Company in London. He was appointed non-executive Chairman of TV3 in 1998. He joined the board of the Dublin International Film Festival in 2004. He was appointed as Chair of Bord Scannán na hÉireann/The Irish Film Board in 2005.
Philip is currently Chairman of Ilex URC Ltd. which was established to promote the physical, economic and social regeneration of Derry-Londonderry and has specific responsibility to manage and re-develop the former military base at Ebrington. Ilex is owned by and accountable to the Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland (OFMDFM).
He served as CEO & Board member of the Digital Hub Development Agency from 2002-2013. The Digital Hub is a key element of the Government´s National Digital Strategy and aims to create a centre of excellence for Digital Media in enterprise, education and the arts.
He also holds other current Board memberships at Dublin Simon Community (Chair from 2004 – 2007), LERO the Irish Sofware Research Center at University of Limerick, The Liberties Community Training Agency and SligoMusicFest Ltd.(Chair 2005 – 2009) which runs the critically acclaimed annual Sligo Live Festival.
A guitarist himself, Philip was heavily involved in the Music Business in the late 1970´s/early 1980´s. In 1977 he co-founded and organised the Ballisodare Festival which was Ireland´s first 3-day weekend music festival. The festival ran successfully for 6 years and attracted audiences of 20,000 at its peak.
He moved to the computer industry in the mid 80´s when he joined Digital Equipment Corporation in Clonmel. During his career with Digital, he held a number of international positions in Geneva and subsequently in Boston.
He returned to Dublin in 1997 as Vice President/MD of international operations for Visio Corporation, a Seattle-based software PLC. During his tenure, Visio´s business expanded rapidly from €40m to €200m in revenue and in January 2000 Microsoft acquired the business in an all share transaction valued at 1.5bn dollars.
Philip holds an MSc. (Mgt.) from Trinity College, Dublin and is a graduate of Stanford University´s executive development programme. He is a member of the marketing Institute of Ireland (MMII) and of The Insitute of Directors (IoD).
James Hickey is the Chief Executive of Bord Scannan na hÉireann/ The Irish Film Board (BSÉ/IFB) having taken up the position in June 2011. BSÉ/IFB is a statutory governmental agency established to assist and encourage the making of films in Ireland and the development of the industry for film production in Ireland. It provides funding for the development, production and distribution of films in Ireland. Prior to this appointment James was since 1992 a media and entertainment lawyer and the partner in charge of the Media and Entertainment Law Group in Matheson Ormsby Prentice, Irelands largest law firm. He is a member of the European Film Academy and was Chairman of the Project Arts Centre (1982 – 1988) and the National Theatre Society (Abbey Theatre) (1992 – 2001). He was educated as Trinity College Dublin, MA LLB.