2020 marks the 58th Anniversary of The Chieftains beginning. Since 1962 they have been six-time Grammy Award winners and been highly recognized for reinventing traditional Irish music on a contemporary and International scale. The Chieftains ability to transcend musical boundaries to blend tradition with modern music has notably hailed them as one of the most renowned and revered musical groups to this day.
So what is an Irish Goodbye you may ask? Dictionary.com states that an Irish Goodbye is sneaking out of a party without telling anyone, but some people disagree. They say that an Irish person can’t be the last one to leave the party without hours of long conversations, a few sing-alongs and elaborate keening farewells. So you may have to guess which definition fits this tour. Are they leaving us or are they staying around for a few more songs?
As cultural ambassadors, The Chieftains’ performances have been linked with seminal historic events, such as being the first Western musicians to perform on the Great Wall of China, participating in Roger Water’s “The Wall” performance in Berlin in 1990, and being the first ensemble to perform a concert in the Capitol Building in Washington DC. In 2010, their experimental collaborations extended to out of this world, when Paddy Moloney’s whistle and Matt Molloy’s flute traveled with NASA astronaut, Cady Coleman, to the international space station.