We are four sisters who come from Bundoran, Co. Donegal in the Northwest of Ireland. Our mother Kathleen was the singer in her brothers ceili band (The Richard Fitzgerald Ceili Band) so when we were young our uncle Richie would come down to the house every Friday evening to teach us Irish music. They were still making albums so there was always music in the house.
When we hit our teenage years, we decided that we wanted to play rock music so we formed the Screaming Orphans. At first we played around locally at Surf Festivals (Bundoran is a major surfing destination in Ireland) playing covers of bands such as the Red Hot Chilli Peppers, the Indigo Girls and others. Then we started writing our own music and we traveled to Dublin to play in the Baggot Inn, Slattery's, Whelans and Mean Fiddler. From there, we started to tour Europe and appeared on numerous TV stations and signed a publishing deal with Blue Mountain Music (owned by Chris Blackwell of Island Music). Then Luka Bloom invited us to play at a St. Brigid's day concert in Kildare. There were many of the top Irish artists playing at this concert including Maire Brennan (Clannad), Christy Moore, Liam O'Maonlai and Sinead O'Connor. That was our first meeting with Sinead and a couple of months later she asked us to appear on a children's programme she was making for Channel 4.
The following year she asked us to be her back-up singers for her forthcoming "Gospel Oak" tour in 1997. We also became the opening act for the show as the "Screaming Orphans" and then returned to sing as part of her band. During this time we toured all over Europe, North America and Canada and we appeared on the "David Letterman" show and "Sessions on 54th Street" as well as numerous other TV shows.
After that, we toured the following year with Babba Maal and sang at his homecoming concert in Dakar, Senegal as well as his recorded concert in the Festival Hall in London. We also recorded with Peter Gabriel and the Afro Celt Sound System and we were the backing vocalists on the Joni Mitchell track on the Chieftains album "Tears of Stone."
The following year we signed a deal with WEA (Warner UK) and went to Normandy, France to record our debut album "Listen and Learn" with legendary producer Mike Hedges (Siouxie and the Banshees, Manic Street Preachers, Texas, Travis, U2). So this is it!
Over the last five years, the band, now based in New York City, has been performing up and down the East coast and in some of the bigger Irish festivals in the U.S.
For a list of upcoming gigs, check out our web site at www.screamingorphans.com.
Joan Diver - Drums, Bodhran, Vocals
Gráinne Diver - Guitars, Vocals
Angela Diver - Bass, Violin, Vocals
Marie Thérèse Diver - Keyboard, Accordion, Vocals
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