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2018 Awards

Lifetime Achievement Award

Patsy Hanly was born in 1947 in Kilrooskey, Co. Roscommon, and was introduced to traditional flute-playing by his father and grandfather who played in the local fife and drum band in Kilgefin. Surrounded by music at home, Patsy taught himself to play initially on whistle before moving on to take up the flute. He grew up in an area rich in musicians and steeped in a distinctive local musical accent and style.

Patsy Hanly

Citation

Born in Kilrooskey, Co. Roscommon, the recipient of this year’s Lifetime Achievement Gradam is the epitome of the regional flute style of the area and continues to influence younger generations in his locality and beyond.

An incredibly humble man, he is always keen to play down his achievements, but it’s safe to say he has played and performed with the cream of Irish music during his lifetime. He has a vast knowledge and experience of Irish music, and is universally known and loved wherever he goes.

He has taught and performed at festivals worldwide, and has appeared on several recordings including cameo appearances with The Bridge Céilí Band and The Boys Of The Lough. More recently he was involved in the production of The Flute Players of Roscommon CDs, of which the money raised went back to the local community to foster younger musicians musical development in the area.

This year’s Gradam Saoil deservedly goes to Patsy Hanly.

 

Biog

Patsy Hanly was born in 1947 in Kilrooskey, Co. Roscommon, and was introduced to traditional flute-playing by his father and grandfather who played in the local fife and drum band in Kilgefin. Surrounded by music at home, Patsy taught himself to play initially on whistle before moving on to take up the flute. He grew up in an area rich in musicians and steeped in a distinctive local musical accent and style.  He quickly absorbed the technical nuances of the local style of flute playing and listened intently to 78 rpm records of John McKenna, James Morrison, Michael Coleman and Paddy Killoran and spent time playing with Packie Duignan, Larry Kelly, and Peter Horan.

Given this background, it’s not surprising that  he is acknowledged as the epitome of the regional flute style of the North Connacht area and he continues to influence younger generations in his locality and beyond.  Patsy is a deep source of knowledge and information on his local musical style and he is generous in sharing this with others.  A humble and generous man, Patsy is keen to play down his achievements, but it’s safe to say he has played and performed with the cream of Irish music during his lifetime in music. In The Companion to Irish Traditional Music, Fintan Vallely notes that in 1972 Patsy became All-Ireland Champion ‘by accident’ according to himself – the story goes that he had to be ‘rounded up’ by a Comhaltas official to perform in the competitions! And the same source tells how Patsy also used to play fiddle until he ‘gave it up for Lent one year and never went back to it’.

Patsy’s affable personality and sharp wit have endeared him to musicians the length and breadth of Ireland and farther afield – he has taught and performed at festivals worldwide, and has appeared on several recordings including cameo appearances with The Bridge Ceili Band and The Boys Of The Lough.

More recently he was involved in the production of The Flute Players of Roscommon CDs, of which the money raised went back to the local community to support opportunities for young musicians in the area.

 

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