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Club Passim is back in person with a fourth of July tradition at the legendary Cambridge listening room, Summer Boston Celtic Music Festival (Summer BCMFest). The one day festival will feature four of New England’s best Celtic acts including Hanneke Cassel and Keith Murphy, Calico, Copley Street, and Rakish. This will be a hybrid event, with a limited number of in-person tickets available and the show available streaming online. Rakish and Copley Street will be performing live on stage, with Calico and Hanneke Cassel & Keith Murphy screening videos of performances prerecorded for this event. All four acts will be viewable by in-person & virtual audiences. The Summer BCMFest will begin Sunday, July 4th at 7PM. A limited number of tickets will be available at Passim.org.
Passim’s Summer BCMFest is tailored after the annual BCMFest, a gathering held each January to celebrate Greater Boston’s richness of music, song and dance from Irish, Scottish, Cape Breton and other Celtic traditions. Like it’s winter counterpart, Summer BCMFest showcases the vast range of sounds and styles found in Boston’s Celtic music community.
The Summer BCMFest lineup includes:
Hanneke Cassel and Keith Murphy
Effervescent and engaging, Boston-based fiddler Hanneke Cassel is a performer, teacher and composer whose career spans over two decades. Her style fuses influences from the Isle of Skye and Cape Breton Island with Americana grooves and musical innovations, creating a cutting-edge acoustic sound that retains the integrity and spirit of the Scottish tradition. Hanneke’s music is a blend of the contemporary and traditional, described by the Boston Globe as “exuberant and rhythmic, somehow wild and innocent, delivered with captivating melodic clarity and an irresistible playfulness.”
Newfoundland-born guitarist Keith Murphy began absorbing his native musical languages – folk songs, ballads and dance music – from an early age. A proficient multi-instrumentalist, he has long applied considerable energy to the rhythmic side of music, becoming a valued band member and highly sought-after sideman on guitar, mandolin and foot percussion.
With its unique mix of driving cello, 12-string guitar, and a hell of a lot of foot percussion, Calico brings a fiery twist to the fiddle music of Québec and New England. Whether they’re playing archival crooked tunes or new compositions, Casey Murray, Jesse Ball, and Eric Boodman create a joyous sound all their own. They’re bound to make you want to get up and dance!
Boston based Uilleann piper Joey Abarta and fiddler Nathan Gourley are two of America’s great young trad musicians, who have been playing music together daily since 2013. Their debut duo album, Copley Street, featuring Owen Marshall on Greek bouzouki, has an undeniable chemistry and demonstrates a nuanced understanding of each other’s playing. Their music includes offbeat settings of well-known tunes and beautiful pieces that seem to languish in obscurity. “Copley Street” is a wonderful album from two stunning young players that adds to Boston’s rich history of traditional Irish music.
Violinist Maura Shawn Scanlin and guitarist Conor Hearn unite to form “Rakish.” The pair gets their namesake from the traditional Irish tune Rakish Paddy, an origin that aptly suits the duo and their shared background in traditional Irish and Scottish music. Yet “rakish” itself also suggests something strikingly unconventional in its appearance, and Maura and Conor knowingly embrace this wealth of connotation in their music, drawing on the music they grew up with and performing it with their own slant.
Rakish has performed on Front Row Boston, Brian O’Donovan’s 2020 “A Christmas Celtic Sojourn,” the Burren Backroom Series, and they can be heard on broadcasts of GBH’s “A Celtic Sojourn.” They have appeared at esteemed festivals including the Boston Celtic Music Festival, the Bellingham Irish Music Festival, and the Rockport Celtic Music Festival. Rakish is a recipient of the 2019 Iguana Fund Grant generously supported by Club Passim.
All staff and performers will be fully vaccinated, and all staff will be wearing masks. Passim strongly encourages patrons to be vaccinated, and patrons are welcome to wear a mask. Disposable masks will be available at the door.
The Summer BCMFest will be Sunday, July 4 at 7 PM. A limited number of tickets are available now at Passim.org. The show will also stream live at Passim.org/summerbcmfest.