Peadar and Pio
Tipperary born and bred Irish Tenor Banjoist Pio Ryan has been playing the NYC Irish Traditional circuit for seven years now. His deep rooted traditional style mixed with blues and bluegrass influences creates a unique twist with a sound that is both driven and refreshing.
Pio learned his trade from his father John Ryan, a renowned whistle player from North Tipperary. After earning a degree in Professional Irish Music Performance, Pio officially transplanted to the US in 2005 finding a home at the Irish Arts Center. He originated the Irish Tenor Banjo and Mandolin programs, whose strong following continues to grow. Pio's teaching credits also include faculty membership at two of the most prestigious workshops of Irish Music- The Catskills Irish Arts Week and The Swannanoa Gathering.
When he's not teaching, Pio remains very active on the Irish Traditional scene in the U.S and abroad. Venues include Webster Hall in NYC, Mandalay Bay Casino in Las Vegas, Mulligan's in Amsterdam, and The National Concert Hall in Dublin, as well as festivals like the Kansas City Irish Music Festival and Karlsruhe Festival in Germany. You'd be likely to meet Pio at one of the many weekly sessions around NYC sharing tunes and stories with friends and newcomers.
Dublin folk singer Peadar Hickey has been telling Ireland's history through song for many years on the Dublin music circuit. A true 'Dub', he learned his trade on the banks of the river Liffey in Ireland cultural quarter - Temple Bar. Peadar has been performing solo and collaborative gigs in renown Irish music venues such as the Arlington Hotels, The Temple Bar and Oliver St. John Gogarty's. Having been on the Irish music circuit for so long, Peadar began to team up with traditional musicians such as Alan Doherty of Grada, Eamonn De Barra of Slide, Tomas O Briain of Riverdance among others and developed a distinct style of guitar accompaniment for traditional Irish music. While performing at Irish Arts Week in East Durham, Peadar teamed up with banjo player Pio Ryan. The pair then took their show to New York City and are performing weekly as a duo in the bustling midtown venue, Tir na n-Og. A fluent Irish language speaker, Peadar brings an important aspect of Irish culture to his and Pio's shows with many many songs in the old language. While never failing to engage any audience in a good aul sing-along, Peadar's own songwriting is also show-cased in modern ballad's with a strong social and historical conscience.