Kate Wegner and Chuck Donnelly have studied music in
Ireland, New England, and Cape Brenton. Over the years, they have developed a musical form based on the age-old Celtic dance-music traditions and their close musical cousin, Old-time-music from the American South and mid-west. Music, like any language, evolves over time and geographical areas as people migrate and cultures intermix. In Europe, Celtic music, in one form or another, has roots in Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Isle of Man, Cornwall, Brittany, and parts of Iberia (Spanish and Portuguese regions). Many early American settlers brought Celtic musical traditions with them. Over the past few centuries the music continued to evolve and develop into distinctive regional styles. A particularly distinctive musical style evolved in the American Southeast where African slaves introduced the banjo (made from gourds, wood, and gut strings) to the Celtic music brew. Canada (most notably Cape Breton, Quebec, and Newfoundland) also hosts regions of well-developed and distinctive Celtic music traditions. In each region the music has been passed on from generation to generation, learned by ear, and largely left unwritten and undocumented. In the past 30 years or so, many books have been published preserving many of the tunes for future generations.
New England, being "on the road" between Celtic Europe, Canada, and the American Southeast, has developed its own "Celtic" music style that is influenced by the Old-time music of the South and the music of Canada and Europe. In Maine, the Celtic music traditions are re-awakening after a period of decline spawned by the introduction of electronic music and mass media. A relatively small, but growing, community of musicians in Maine are now reenergizing New England's music style and once again the music is evolving in the spirit of its traditional roots. At age 22, Kate Wegner, from Wilton Maine, is already one of Maine's influential fiddlers. Kate is actively composing traditional-style music, recording, and performing regularly in a guitar/fiddle duo with Bar Harbor guitarist, Chuck Donnelly. Kate and Chuck also perform with the Green Mountain Railway band, a Bar Harbor area contradance band.
Kate and Chuck will take you on a journey of traditional and original tunes that weave together the fabrics of the Celtic and Old-time traditions into a new musical form that is at once familiar and yet..."uniquely Kate and Chuck."
In concert, Kate and Chuck often play on the "edge," so to speak. They keep the energy of each performance high through spontaneity. In some cases they will switch tunes or the musical approach to a tune as the mood of the music and audience demands. There is only one constant in
Kate and Chuck's musical approach...everyone leaves
every show saying "wow!"...