Carmel Sheerin & The Ravens, voted European Bluegrass Band of the Year for 2005 this past May, will release their first CD, Runaway, in late August. The band is based in Ireland and features vocalist Carmel Sheerin, her three brothers Danny (guitar), Des (bass) and Tom (mandolin/fiddle), along with ex-pat American Tom Hanway on banjo.
Proving that some things transcend geography and national identity, the story of the band’s origins reads much like those of the many family bluegrass bands which have proliferated in the United States. The Sheerin siblings were raised by musical parents (Dan and Mary Sheerin) who passed along their love for traditional and country music to their 11 children, 8 of whom have remained musical into adulthood. Many of the children have played traditional country music with their parents over the years. The Ravens have left the nest and are a full-fledged original bluegrass band.
In addition to the band being selected for such a high honor by the European Bluegrass Music Association, bluegrass fans should note that renowned producer and recording engineer, Bill VornDick was so taken by the band’s demo that he agreed to travel to Ireland to produce this new recording, which was accomplished at Des Sheerin’s own studio.
The Ravens have a CD release party scheduled in Moate on August 23, with more details available on their web site. No audio or online order links as yet, but you can expect to see those available soon.