Traditional Irish Music and Song
A Performance by Natural Gas is not just two or three hours of songs and instrumental music, it is an experience which will linger long after the final note has been played. And it is easy to understand why this is so – their sheer energy and enthusiasm, combined with good humour, musical abandon and a great sense of joie de vivre, guarantees a great night out for everyone.
Natural Gas is a four-piece group from Co. Cork, Ireland. They have a gigantic repertoire from slow and plaintive love songs to lively sea shanties to rousing ballads, poetry and recitations and live dance music played on a wide range of instruments including uilleann pipes, guitar, tin whistle, accordion, mandolin, banjo, harmonica and bodhran. Although their roots are firmly based in traditional music, the band has no problem in traversing all musical styles.
Tim is the main singer with the group. Tim is a great admirer of the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem, and their exuberant approach to singing had a great influence on him. He a consummate professional in his approach to Irish folk songs, and his humorous introductions to songs and tunes are a constant delight.
As well as singing, Tim plays harmonica, guitar and bodhran. Tim’s songwriting skills have brought him phenomenol success with the No 1 Hit ‘The Langer’ being the biggest selling single in Ireland in 2004. The poignant ‘Eleanor’ won him the 1798 Commemorative Song Contest and is featured on a new documentary on the life of Michael Collins while new songs like Dear Old City, Song for the Fallen, and Paddy Rasta receive regular airplay throughout the country.
Diarmuid is the piper with the group. His knowledge of traditional music and its history is comprehensive. He has a great feel for his music, making the stirring and emotive sound of the uilleann pipes a great addition to the group, whether playing the often-poignant song airs or lively jigs and reels.
Diarmuid was taught the pipes by Tomas O Canainn, a Derryman now living in Cork. Diarmuid has also composed a suite for the RNLI. Entitled “The Courtmacsherry Lifeboat Suite” it was recorded live in Truro Cathedral, Cornwall for the BBC. As well as piping, Diarmuid also plays whistles and is not adverse to singing the odd song or two.
In 1996 the band was joined by the button accordion supremo Ger Murphy. Immensely talented Ger has added a new dimension to the band blending perfectly with pipes and fiddle, giving a huge exciting sound. Ger has been the first choice musician of Irish dancers for years, playing for Comhaltas, the Cowhie-Ryan dancers and more recently the brilliant Abbey Ceilí Band. An accomplished pianist, Ger also plays keyboard with the band.
Legendary fiddle maestro, Vince brought his incredible style of music to all parts of the globe. The son of a fiddle player, Vince is heavily influenced by the music of Sligo, his father’s county, as well as by bluegrass and old-time fiddle styles. His unique flamboyant style of playing introduces an exciting element to the sound of the band. Vince has previously played and recorded with bands such as Kowloon Bridge, Bone Idol and Nomos.
Occassionally the band are joined by honorary member Mo O’Connor. There is not much we can say about Mo, his life is a bit of a mystery. He was known here in the 70’s from playing with various bands. Then he disappeared to the USA for fifteen years, he would crop up on shows like ‘Unsolved Mysteries’ where he would be spotted by insomniacs playing bit parts. He refers to this time as ‘a coma in a parallel dimension while searching for the harmony of the universe’ and talks about ‘going down the Hank Williams highway’. What we are finding out is, how well known he is in Boston, New York and various places and yes………there are rumours! We have known him for five years, he plays a variety of instrument on the new album as well as the band. The mystery is unfolding slowly……………………….
Natural Gas released their first recording, ‘In The Pipeline’, in March of 1988.
This was followed in 1992 by ‘Love and Hairy Bacon’, which was a huge success and gained them many new fans. 1997 way the release of ‘Kind Friends and Companions’ and soon became their most popular album featuring such classics as Kilkelly and The Silly Slang Song. Their first live CD recorded in Belgium was issued in 2000 and it features many original song by Tim such as The Millennium Babies and Song for the Fallen. 2004 saw the lads hit the No 1 spot with their single ‘The Langer’, while the follow up album ‘Come Here I Wantcha’ flew off the shelves when released that Christmas.
Natural Gas has toured Europe extensively for the last 15 years, travelling to Holland, Germany, Belgium and Switzerland, playing prestigious festivals like Jospop and Labadoux in Belgium, City of Geneva St Patricks Day Festival and 2010 saw the band invited to play The Skagen Music Festival in Denmark.
The Millennium year saw the band’s first tour of America, playing Virginia, Washington, New Jersey and culminating in the Rockaway Beach Festival in New York. In 2003 the band play the famous Mardigras-style River Street Festival in Savannah, Georgia to over 6,000 people. The Waterfront Association were so impressed by the driving performance of the lad they have invited them to play every year since at the St Patricks Day Parade, the second largest in the world after New York.
The band also broke new ground becoming the first Irish group to play on the remote island of Sakhalin in Eastern Siberia.
For the past fifteen years, Natural Gas the traditional music group have been entertaining their loyal and evergrowing fan base in music venues throughout the country.
They can be frequently found entertaining at:-
- The Danny Mann Lounge, Killarney, Co Kerry
- The Marine Hotel, Glandore, Co Cork
- The Trident Hotel, Kinsale, Co Cork
- The Lansdowne Hotel, Kenmare, Co Kerry
- Cronins Bar, Crosshaven, Co Cork
The band also performs at many festivals including:-
- The Humours of Bandon, Co Cork
- Kinsale Regatta, Kinsale, Co Cork
- The Ford Week, Crosshaven, Co Cork
- Youghal Maritime Festival, Youghal, Co Cork
- Old Time Fayre, Clonakilty, Co Cork
As well as the above, the band frequently performs at corporate functions, banguets, weddings and conferences in venues like, Dromoland Castle, Adare Manor, The Hotel, Europe, Glin Castle, Old Head of Kinsale Golf Club, Castle Leslie and even the occasional boat cruise around Cork Harbour.
The Band can be contacted as follows:-
Natural Gas Management
Rathard, Aherla, Co. Cork, Ireland
or through contact us