Pádraic Keane

Uilleann piper Pádraic Keane hails from Maree, Co. Galway and was born into a great musical family in 1991.  His father Tommy is a well known piper, originally from Waterford who was taught by the legendary piper Tommy Kearney.  His mother Jacqueline McCarthy is a very respected concertina player and is the daughter of the late Tommy McCarthy from West Clare who was a multi-instrumentalist playing pipes, whistle and concertina.  Jacqueline’s sister Marion also plays pipes.  It is little wonder therefore, considering the love and prevalence of piping on both sides of the family, that Pádraic began learning the pipes at the age of eight under the guidance of his father.  He also received tuition from many leading pipers at various summer schools including Robbie Hannan, Mick O’Brien, Emmett Gill, Jimmy O’Brien Moran, Seán McKeon, Brian McNamara and Ronan Browne.  His first pipes were a practice set borrowed from Na Píobairí Uilleann.  Since then Pádraic has inherited his grandfather’s pipes – a concert pitch set made by Leo Rowsome.  When playing solo he likes to perform on a flat set in C made by Geoff Wooff.

He has performed at many events organised by Na Píobairí Uilleann, including recitals at Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy, NPU Annual Tionóls, Session with the Pipers in The Cobblestone and Ceol sa Chlub, the latter in the company of his fiddle playing sisters – Siobhán and his twin Maisie-Kate.  His music has been broadcast on Clare FM, Galway Bay FM, Raidió na Gaeltachta, TG4 and RTÉ Radio & Television. 

He is a member of the traditional group Eamhain Mhacha – a group of musicians who became friends at Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy and Scoil Acla.  They competed in the Gael Linn Siansa competition, have appeared on RTÉ Television, played support to The Chieftains and performed at the Cooley Collins Festival in Gort.

Pádraic's piping comes from the style of Willie Clancy but other influences such as Seán McKiernan and Séamus Ennis are also discernable in his music.  He in turn is now passing on his love for piping and has a number of fledgling pipers coming to him for tuition.  He is also one of the piping tutors at Scoil Samhraidh Willie Clancy held in Miltown Malbay each year.  In 2011 he was awarded Gradam Ceoil TG4 – Ceoltóir Óg na Bliana (TG4 Music Award - Young Musician of the Year).  He has toured America (as soloist with The Irish Chamber Orchestra) performing Termōn - a piece for uilleann pipes and strings by Mícheál Ó Súilleabháin - which was commissioned for the tenth anniversary of 9/11.  He has also toured with Ragús and worked with Galway's Irish language theatre group - An Taibhdhearc.  He is featured on "The Rolling Wave" - a CD of young pipers issued by Na Píobairí Uilleann in 2012. 

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