Details of the band that performed with Noriana on her Cd Launch tour May 2010
STEPHANIE COLEMAN – Oldtime fiddle
Stephanie hails from Chicago, Illinois. She was first exposed to old time music through her father, a fiddler and music enthusiast. At nine years old, Stephanie picked up a fiddle and played a nearly recognizable, albeit scratchy, version of "Johnny Don't Get Drunk”. She proceeded to immerse herself in Appalachian and Midwestern styles of old-time fiddling. She was mentored by local Chicago area fiddlers and traveled the country to attend music camps, festivals, and contests. She graduated in 2008 from Duke University, earning a degree in American Studies. While at Duke, Stephanie honed her passion for audio documentary production. Combining her love for music and radio, she produced a short documentary about venerated Kentucky fiddler, Clyde Davenport. In 2008 and 2009, Stephanie played fiddle in Triad Stage's "A Beautiful Star: An Appalachian Nativity", a highly acclaimed musical in North Carolina. Stephanie has performed and taught at festivals, workshops, and dances throughout the United States and Ireland and remains a regular finalist in the renowned fiddle contest at the Appalachian String Band Festival in Clifftop, West Virginia. Her fiddling was recently featured on banjoist Adam Hurt’s celebrated recording, “Perspective”. In 2009, Stephanie joined Uncle Earl, an internationally touring all-girl string band signed to Rounder Records. She currently resides in Brooklyn, NY.
CLEEK SCHREY – Irish and Oldtime Fiddle
Cleek is a fiddler and percussive dancer from Charlottesville, Virginia. As a teen in Virginia, he learned Irish fiddle tunes from Brendan Mulvihill and other fiddlers in the region. Regular visits to the home of the late Paddy Reynolds, the great Longford fiddler who settled in New York, helped to intensify Cleek's interest in the fiddle playing of the 78 rpm era. In 2005, he co-produced of the release of archival recordings of the late Reynolds’ surviving work. While a teen, he was a featured musician on The Raw Bar, a documentary on Irish music that aired on RTE 1 in Ireland, and most recently on Féilte, a program on Irish music in America, on the Irish language station TG4. Cleek performs Irish music regularly with his longtime friend, accordion player Sean McComiskey and the Clare accordionist and fiddler, Damien Connolly. He also fiddles in the old time stringband, Bigfoot, alongside legendary old time musicians Rhys Jones, John Herrmann, and Susie Goehring. Last summer they picked up first place in traditional band competition at the Clifftop festival in West Virginia.
GERRY PAUL – Guitar and 5 string banjo
Gerry is a very highly regarded guitar player with Irish traditional/americana music group Gráda. Although he was born in Dublin, he grew up in Wellington, New Zealand. He had a love of Irish music for many years and moved to Ireland in 1998 to pursue this dream. He completed the Ballyfermot diploma in Traditional Irish music and then cofounded nationally acclaimed traditional super group Gráda. With Gráda he recorded Endeavour (2002), The Landing Step (2004), Cloudy Day Navigation (2007) and Natural Angle (2010). Their most recent acclaimed album Natural Angle was produced by grammy award winner Tim O’Brien. The album launched headlong into the cross-genre world of new acoustic music, bridging traditional Irish and Appalachian tunes and songs with Americana songwriting. The success of the band and his spirited and evocative reputation has made him one of the most favoured guitar players in the folk music scene in Ireland. Over the last ten years he has performed internationally at festivals and concerts accompanying some of Ireland's greatest musicians including Gerry “Banjo” O'Connor, Sharon Shannon, Tola Custy, Alan Kelly, Padraic Rynne, Pauline Scanlon, Yvonne Kane to name a few. The vigorous high energy and appeal of Gráda brought the band to be one of the busiest irish folk bands on the live circuit, spending the last ten years globetrotting throughout the U.S, Australia, Japan, New Zealand and repeatedly around Europe.
Gerry also plays in Bluegrass legend Tim O'Brien’s Two Oceans Trio along with Trevor Hutchinson, playing a mix of Bluegrass, Old Timey, Ragtime and Country songs. He has recently started playing the Banjo and Lap Steel, to compliment the Americana music he has been exploring.
CHRISTOF VAN DER VEN – Guitar and Vocals
Many years ago in a small village in the south of the Low Countries, a tousle-headed nine-year-old Dutch boy picked up a guitar and, under the influence of his musician parents and blues-singing Uncle Clemens, picked out ‘The Drunken Sailor’. As his voice developed, he sang Mozart a cappella on long journeys in the back of his parents’ van and entering his teenage years he began to pursue the style of music he loved best, writing and singing songs influenced by 60s rock, Americana and indie-folk.
Three years ago, Christof was lured by the bohemian bright lights and the smoky winding cobble-stoned late nights of Galway in the West of Ireland. The city received him warmly and he was soon dubbed “Galway’s Adopted Son”. The lyricality of his songs and his voice, abundant in strength and sensitivity, charmed the hearts of all who heard him busking and he quickly became a popular performer in venues around the city with Americana band Mad Uncle Harry. 2010 will have seen Christof play in London, Manchester, Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Cologne, Copenhagen, Amsterdam and Zurich.
’Springtime’, his new EP, was launched in June 2010 in Ireland where he was joined by Dave Hingerty on drums (Swell Season/The Frames/Josh Ritter), Trevor Hutchinson on Bass (The Waterboys/Eric Bibb/Natalie Merchant) and Gerry Paul on lap steel/banjo/guitars (Tim O’Brien Trio/Gráda) and he was supported and joined on backing vocals by The Staves from Watford (Atlantic Records, Tom Jones band).
He is currently on tour in New Zealand and Australia where he is supporting Tim O’Brien and doing solo gigs at Portfairy folkfestival and Blue mountains folkfestival in Australia.
PAUL O’DRISCOLL – Double Bass
Since the age of thirteen Paul O'Driscoll has been perfecting his craft of being one of the most solid and soulful double bass players around.He studied under the stewardship of Oonagh Ferguson at Chatham Row in Dublin. While studying Paul was also becoming a great live player.He formed the ground breaking trad trio Deiseal. It was at this time Paul was starting to get work with some of todays leading musicians and producers. Charlie Lennon came calling and Paul became the backbone of his famine orchestra,the Belfast band Tamlin became one of the first of many recordings that Paul has been involved with. Along with this Paul has written string arangements for the great Mick Hanly on his"wooden horses" CD. To this day Paul has appeared on over one hundred CD's. His live work has seen him playing his trade with,Sharon Shannon, Riverdance, The Sean Keane Band, The Smith Sisters, The Cafe Orchestra, Micheal O'Sullivans Hiberno Jazz, The Josephine Marsh Band, Moher, Sean Tyrell, The Bowhouse Quintet,The Kilfernora Ceili Band and The Eleanor Shanley. Paul has a vision of how his bass should sound and it is that and nothing else that drives Paul and is the secret of the amazing energy he brings to every project.