Poitín (pronounced 'potcheen') is not only that famous Irish firewater distilled from wheat and rye, but it's also an award winning Celtic band from the Czech Republic not averse to a little experimentation - on their latest album they've got a didge player and a saxophonist who doubles up on low whistles and tin whistles. The band is, however, firmly grounded in the pub session tradition and like nothing better than sitting round a table in the corner of a cosy pub and bashing out old favourites about tarry sailors, merry maids and drunken nights.
History: Poitín play Celtic music in all its shapes and forms from haunting Breton melodies to raunchy traditional Irish songs. They've performed at festivals across Europe in Italy, France, Poland, Germany and the Czech Republic. The latest CD, the Celtic Radio Album of the Year, Bofiguifluki (2010) features a daring mix of saxophone, didgeridoo and more traditional instruments to create a sparkling collection of songs and tunes, some traditional, some new, all suffused with Poitín magic. They formed in Pilsen, CZ, in 1996 and have released five albums to date on their own label and are also included on four compilation albums (two released by Popron, CZ and two by Marc Gunn in the U.S.). The first album, 'Poitín' was released in 2000 and features a traditional collection of tunes including the 'Congress Reel' and songs such as 'Spanish Lady' as well as lesser known Breton and English songs.
The second album, 'De la Basse Bretagne' was eventually released in 2003 and is a tribute to the talents of the band's French singer, Neige Pruvost before her return to her birthplace. It consists mainly of French and Breton songs and tunes and features Dan Eberle on double bass. There is, however, a traditional Czech folk song, 'Lida, Lidunka' at the end of the album in acknowledgement of the band's own Central European roots. Poitín were pleased to be invited to contribute to Popron's 'Best of Celtic Music I and II' compilation albums and recently Marc Gunn's 'Victims of Irish Music' and ‘The Best of the Irish and Celtic Music Podcast’.
They released their first CD ‘Poitín’ back in 2000, it has 17 tracks of traditional Irish, Scottish and French songs and tunes. It features Neige Pruvost on the French and Breton songs, Jeremy King’s vocals on the Scottish and Irish numbers and Tonda Muzik on bodhran.
Their second CD, released in 2003, was made as a farewell tribute to Neige who returned to France in 2001. It is a compilation of 12 French and Breton songs called ‘De la Basse Bretagne’ with Tyna Frankova and Neige Pruvost on vocals. It concludes with a traditional Czech folk song, ‘Lída, Lidunka’.
Poitín's third CD ‘Hot Days’ was released in 2006 to mark the band's tenth anniversary . It features 13 tracks with Helena Markova on saxophone. You can hear scintillating arrangements of classic jigs, reels and songs, plus completely new compositions by Helena, Honza and Kuba, all with an unmistakable Celtic flavour.
In 2009 the band released Jiggery Pokery, a collection of favourite songs and tunes from the first three CDs plus some remixed electrocelt tracks from DSPI.
Their fifth CD is the Celtic Radio Award winning album Bofiguifluki (2010), an inspired collection of tunes and songs which has won accolades from around the world.
Poitín also feature on four compilation albums, ‘The Mystery of Celtic Music I’ and ‘The Mystery of Celtic Music II’ (released in the Czech Republic by Popron) and Marc Gunn’s compilations of Celtic music from around the world, ‘Victims of Irish Music’ and ‘The Best of the Irish and Celtic Music Podcast’ .