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Gradam Ceoil TG4

Paddy Glackin – Musician of the Year


Fiddle player and founding member of the Bothy Band, Paddy Glackin, was born in Dublin and began learning the fiddle from a young age. His father Tom Glackin was a notable fiddle player and taught him the instrument, instilling in him an interest in the fiddle music of Donegal. Glackin’s style of playing was influenced by his father, and subsequently fiddle players John Doherty, Tommie Potts and Pádraig O’Keeffe. In 1973 he was the fiddle champion at the All-Ireland Fleadh Cheoil, and in 1975, he became a founding member of the Bothy Band (original known as Seachtar) with Dónal Lunny, Paddy Keenan, Matt Molloy, Tony MacMahon, Mícheál Ó Domhnaill and Tríona Ní Dhomhnaill.
Glackin also worked as an archivist and as Traditional Music Officer for the Arts Council. He later moved into broadcasting, taking a position with RTÉ radio as a sports producer, presenter, and eventually editor. He released many solo and collaborative albums including Glackin (1977), Doublin (1978) with piper Paddy Keenan, and In Full Spate (1991) with Dónal Lunny.
Although his interests are rooted in Irish traditional music, Glackin has also been involved in a number of experimental recordings including Roaratorio (1979) by American avant-garde composer John Cage, and Hidden Ground, a recording from 1980 made with the late multi-instrumentalist Jolyon Jackson which is notable for its use of synthesizers alongside Glackin’s traditional fiddle playing. In March 2021, he performed at the National Concert Hall as part of a concert celebrating the music of Liam O’Flynn. As a fiddle player, recording and performing artist, broadcaster, archivist and collaborator, Glackin has contributed significantly to Irish music throughout his long and fruitful career.