By Rose Scherlis
On March 6, Irish folk rock came to Somerville, courtesy of Somerville Theatre in Davis Square. John Doyle and Karan Casey performed for the packed theatre, with John Doyle on acoustic guitar and vocals, and Karan Casey singing. Other instruments were incorporated into the act.
After performing the final song of their set, a cover of Nightengale, John Doyle and Karan Casey went on to perform an encore of three more songs, ending with False Lady. The musicians received a standing ovation at the end of their concert.
A Berkeley professor who recently moved to Somerville called John Doyle and Karan Casey’s performance “a beautiful mixture of traditional and original tunes.” “I love Davis Square,” He said. “There are amazing concerts so close to home.”
David McCloughlan, a writer, director, and producer, said of John Doyle and Karan Casey, “They transcend the genre, like Ella Fitzgerald or Joe Pass.” McCloughlan is best known for writing the film Southie.
“They have a great sense of humor,” David Leveille, a fan of Celtic music, said. “The performance was, in one word, amazing.”
John Doyle was born in Ireland. He started playing guitar when he was 11 years old, and became a professional musician at 16 years of age. The first bands he performed in were Chanting House, and Killera, both of which performed in Ireland.
“Irish people have gone to every corner of the globe, you can go to China and meet someone Irish there. It is amazing that the Irish nation has extended out so far for such a little country,” John Doyle said. Doyle and Casey have toured Japan, as well as Canada, and many European and South American countries.
Doyle has performed in Boston previously, including many performances in Somerville. His first performance in the Greater Boston area was at Johnny D’s in Somerville. “Each place is so different, I enjoy the states because I am used to the people here, there’s a good report and a good liveliness, and people know how to enjoy it,” Doyle said.
John Doyle will be performing again in Somerville on Wednesday, May 1, at The Burren in Davis Square. Tickets are still available.