Founded in the 80's by Gweedore singer/fiddler Mairead Ni Mhaonaigh and flute-player Frankie Kennedy from Belfast, Altan has stood the test of time, proving that traditional Irish music still has a place in the present day. Named for a lake in Donegal, the band started with just two members, but has grown and gathered a following enough to carry them through ten studio albums and 20 years of playing together.
Rooted in the Irish sessions, Altan's music spans the range from jigs and reels to the most moving of Irish ballads. As with many bands, some of the musicians have changed throughout the years, most notably with the unfortunate loss of Frankie Kennedy to cancer in the early 1990s. Current band members include: Mairead Ni Mhanoaigh, Dermot Byrne, Ciaran Tourish, Ciaran Curran, Mark Kelly and Daithi Sproule. Some of the albums recorded over the years include: The Red Crow, Harvest Storm, Blackwater and their latest effort, Local Ground.
In 1996 Altan signed with Virgin Records. It was a historic move, as it was a large label for a smaller, traditional Irish band. Other notable achievements are both gold and platinum albums in Ireland and world tours, which have been well-received by their many fans.
Website: Altan Download: Free Altan MP3s not available