“Pure fun, energy and passion…”
“Three of the best ceili players you will hear in the States… with a big-time rock and roll rhythm section behind them.”
“Great musicianship… great songs…”
“No one can sing to a crowd like Kathleen…”
“John has been body surfing with his accordion long before it was fashionable… and even now long afterwards!”
"If you want to have fun... go see Celtic Cross tonight."
Those who have been around Celtic music in the Northeast and in the NYC area are no strangers to Celtic Cross, a group of energetic and dynamic musicians. Bringing together international award winning ceili playing, great vocals, fantastic originals and a rocking rhythm are Celtic Cross hallmarks. Whether you hear them in a bar, a party, or a festival… get ready for fun, energy and passion.
Heard frequently on Fordham University’s WFUV are Celtic Cross hits “All Around My Hat” from the band’s first album Part The First and “Don’t Fear Me Now” from the more recent Last Call recording. In addition to their original set, the band loves to cover R&B, rock and country with their own special style.
Look out for a new Celtic Cross recording in 2006. The band is already playing some of their new songs at their shows while completing their writing. Harkening back to the days that many a “narrowback” Irish-American kid may remember growing up in Irish households around New York, the band is reaching back with their fans to their roots for this work.
Perhaps the group’s success can be attributed to the talents and diverse backgrounds that each member adds to the band...
Kathleen Fee sang her first song shortly after she uttered her first words. She began singing competitively at age five, and has won a variety of awards along the way including Senior North American Traditional Irish Singing Champion. Kathleen’s talent extend beyond singing, she is also a champion Irish step-dancer. Her love of Irish dancing often inspires her to jump out during a performance and “give a step”.
Walter Ensor is a native of the well-known Irish stronghold, Rockaway Beach, New York. Walter hails from a family of musicians who have influenced his unique style and knowledge of music. Walter has been playing the guitar and keyboard for 20 years and has become a master of both.
Kenneth Vesey is an All Ireland Champion and eight times North American Champion on the fiddle. His eclectic style was developed in part by his instructors, Martin Mulvihill, Mary Mahon and Eileen Ivers.
Frankie McCormick on banjo and mandolin, from Tyrone, Ireland, came to the USA 1986. He has 2 All-Ireland solo championship titles on banjo and mandolin as well as the coveted All-Ireland Scor Award. Frankie brings a fresh northern punch to the phrasing of the tunes and his quick wit keeps the audience howling.
Dave Barckow, from Woodside, Queens has been playing drums since the age of 6 and has performed and recorded with a variety of bands and artist in styles ranging from Traditional Irish to Heavy Metal. Dave is also a singer/songwriter who performs regularly around the NYC area.
John Vesey, button accordionist and brother to Kenneth and Kathleen, is a four time North American Champion. His innovative approach to traditional Irish music is evident in his unparalleled style--A style overflowing with energy. He has played with the likes of the Chieftains and Los Lobos.
Patrick Dineen, a Queens, New York native, started taking piano accordion lessons from Pete Kelly at the age of five. Pat has won the title of North American senior Piano Accordion champion. Before joining Celtic Cross and trading in his accordion for the bass guitar, Pat was featured in such bands as Tippling Way and Peter Street.
Review from Irish Voice
Just when you think you're hitting your stride, along comes someone to knock you down. Here I thought I was doing a great service to the Irish community by being a watchdog for our readers. There's a lot of things that are supposed to pass for music out there these days, and I take the job of guiding you to the best of the best very, seriously. So I guess my chest was sufficiently puffed up with a measure of Irish pride when I sat down with a music industry type last week that I hadn’t seen for ages. Over my ilk as a band of pathetic cultural vultures with no musical talent of our own that feed on the carrion of REAL artists. That’s one thing that I hate about the Irish: they never tell you exactly how they feel about things. I left the bar dejected and deflated my life’s mission and purpose of existence shaken to its very core. After running to the comfort of a chocolate chip cookie the size of a manhole cover and a tall skinny decaf latte, I slumped into my chair at the Irish Voice offices. As if on cue, the mailman arrived with a bag full of free CDs. Things were looking up! - At the top of the pile was the new CD from Celtic Cross, Last Call. I am living proof that despite your frame of mind prior to diving into this collection of tunes, it is impossible to be in a bad mood after the last song plays. Even the troubled prose of “Don’t Fear Me Know” turns cheerful when sung in the buoyant honeysuckle style of Kathleen Fee. She has a warm yet spirited vocal delivery that lends itself well to the feisty arrangements. Her brothers John Vesey (button accordion) and Ken Vesey (violin) join Walter Ensor (guitar) Pat Dineen (Bass) and Kevin O’Neill (drums) round out Celtic Cross. They display their tough chops in the instrumentals such as "Mission" and "Ménage." This is a perfect pop rock outfit with a pulsing Irish heart that performs with exhilarating roots rock energy. The accordion and fiddling and organic party feel harkens back to 80s greats The Hooters. "Just a Dream" and the Richard Thompson-penned, "Wall of Death" has the perfect pitch harmonies of the Coors without all the cancer-causing saccharine.