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Danú

Performer

About this Artist

Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw was wrong: youth isn't wasted on the young, not when an Irish band as talented as DANÚ comes along. Danú perform Irish traditional music with a skill and sizzle that have captured the imagination and loyalty of fans worldwide. All under age 30, the Waterford-based septet capture the heart of audiences and critics alike, and Dublin’s Irish Music magazine named Danú the "Best Overall Traditional Act" of 1999.

Their self-released debut recording, Danú, quickly caught the attention of listeners in 1997. It was a natural outcropping of what began modestly and casually two years earlier: Benny McCarthy, Donnchadh Gough, fiddler Daire Bracken, and guitarist Dónal Clancy (Liam Clancy's son, now a member of the Eileen Ivers Band) were good friends based in Waterford who banded together to perform at one of the most prestigious outdoor music events in Europe, the Inter-Celtic Festival in Lorient, France.

American fiddler Jesse Smith, Tipperary guitarist Noel Ryan, and singer Ciarán Ó Gealbháin eventually replaced Bracken, Murray, and MacCraith, and the current lineup has only boosted Dana's profile in Ireland, Britain, Europe, and the United States.

Their Shanachie debut recording, Think Before You Think, certainly delivers all the high-energy playing for which the band is celebrated. The reels "Dinny O'Brien's/Tommy Peoples'/The Small Hills of Offaly," dubbed "The Session Set" by Danú, convey all the exhilaration of a high-flying pub seisiún, propelled at the center by the scintillating duet of Tom Doorley on flute and Jesse Smith on fiddle. Think Before You Think offers depth, delicacy, and dynamism that come from constant experimenting and refining by Danú on tour. The brooding beauty of "The Old Ruined Cottage in the Glen," for example, shifts to a slightly faster tempo with the "Morning Dew" reel that moves into more expansive playing on "Think Before You Think Before You Speak!” and "The First Month of Spring."

Television appearances by Danú include The Late Late Show, Ireland's most popular late-night program; Geanntraí, a highly respected series devoted to traditional music on Ireland's Teilifís Na Gaeilge, or TnaG; and BBC Wales, where their electrifying performance at the 1998 Cnupan Festival was broadcast.

Named for an ancient Irish goddess linked to prosperity and the land, Danú is clearly a force to be reckoned with. Bursting with creativity and spirit, Think Before You Think marks the international debut of a band charting new musical ground in a new century.