The music of Ireland, the Irish, and Irish America. Middlebury, Vermont trio óhAnléigh draws on their ancestral roots and diverse musical talent to entertain audiences with the lively and haunting rhythms of Irish and Irish American culture.
The band got its start in early 2002 when Tom Hanley, a 2nd generation Irishman descended of immigrants from Counties Laois and Roscommon, was asked to entertain an audience at a St. Patrick’s day festival. Tom, who had been performing with a number of bands since the early 70’s, was joined by his 12-year old daughter, Becca, whose haunting soprano voice evoked memories of growing up in Irish households. For the next year, Tom and Becca performed at a number of fairs, Irish clubs and events. Though only a teenager, Becca is becoming an accomplished vocalist, being named in successive years to the Vermont All-State Chorus, opening many events with her rendition of the National Anthem and performing both in choirs and as a soloist outside her óhAnléigh performances.
In early 2003, Cindy Hill, a talented fiddler, singer, and performer of traditional Celtic music, joined them. Cindy’s ancestors hail from Counties Tyrone and Limerick. Cindy played classical violin and piano in her schooldays, and performed in choral groups. Her interest in traditional Celtic music developed from her political activism in the Irish independence movement. Cindy brings her knowledge of Celtic mythology, traditions, and history to the band along with her musical talents.
The band has developed a diverse and unique sound – everything from haunting ballads to Irish folk and rollicking pub songs; Irish-American “tin pan alley” tunes, songs of rebellion, and traditional Celtic sets. This sound stems from their vocal talents – Becca's haunting soprano, Cindy’s smooth alto, and Tom’s baritone, either as soloists or harmonizing. Supporting their vocals are the instruments they play – 6 and 12-string guitar, bouzouki, mandolin, bass, fiddle, tenor banjo, penny whistles, harmonica, bowed psaltry, dulcimer, autoharp, bodhráns, bones, spoons, and a variety of other small percussion instruments, many home-made and styled for particular songs.
After many requests, the band has produced their first CD “…of Irish Crossings Told” (Green Cabin Music, 2006), which contains a number of traditional and folk pieces as well as the band’s original music. The CD was released just in time for St. Patrick's day in March, 2006.
For bookings, more information, and free mp3 downloads, see www.myspace.com/ohanleigh or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org