1974 – present (43 years)
Led by Frankie Gavin (fiddle) and Alec Finn (bouzouki) with an ever-changing line-up of other musicians and singers, De Dannan exemplify a band who stick closely to their trad roots but aren't afraid from time to time to go out on a flyer!
De Dannan (originally Dé Danann) was an Irish folk music group. They were formed by Charlie Piggott (banjo & melodian), Alec Finn (guitar, bouzouki), Johnny "Ringo" McDonagh (bodhrán)and Frankie Gavin (fiddle)as a result of sessions in Hughes's Pub in Spiddal, County Galway, subsequently inviting Dolores Keane (vocals) to join the band. Charlie named them Dé Danann after the legendary Irish tribe, Tuatha Dé Danann.
The group released their eponymous debut album Dé Danann in 1975. Keane left to marry John Faulkner in 1977. (They were both multi-instrumentalists, and recorded 3 folk albums together.) To fill the vacancy, Dé Danann brought in Johnny Moynihan for the second album Selected Jigs Reels and Songs, which featured a bodhrán solo by McDonagh (this album has never been released on CD, reportedly because the master tapes were lost). The Mist Covered Mountain featured various older traditional singers, and on Star-Spangled Molly they were joined by Maura O'Connell. For reasons that have never been made clear, they changed the spelling of the group from "Dé Danann" to "De Dannan".
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