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Genres You Will Love
Folk: Celtic Folk Folk: Drinking Songs Folk: Irish Traditional Folk: Scottish Traditional World: Celtic

By Location
United States - Pennsylvania

Links
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Dead Irish Blues

Johnstown, PA based Dead Irish Blues consists of Greg Faiers (vocals, guitars, mandolin, bouzouki and tenor banjo), Marty Faiers (fiddle, mandolin, backing vocals), Ed Hritz (whistle, concertina, electric and acoustic bagpipes, and bass) and Wayne MacEwan (bodhran, spoons, washboard, backing vocals). The group formed in 1997 when Greg and Marty moved to Johnstown and began performing as a duo, which they still do on the many roadtrips they make between PA and the Gulf Coast each year. The current lineup was established in the fall of 2004 when Ed and Wayne joined the group. When in Memphis, Greg and Marty are joined by the multi-talented Jimmy Crosthwait on washboard.

Dead Irish Blues performs a wide range of styles, from Celtic to blues to zydeco and swing, but frequently does exclusively Celtic shows. Most of the songs, except for the originals, were written by people long since dead. The combination of styles and homage to deceased musicians dictated the name of the group.

MEMBERS

Greg Faiers was born and raised in Memphis, TN where he began playing electric guitar in high school and played in several “garage bands” during his undergrad years at the University of Memphis. After moving to Baton Rouge, LA, Greg began to play in the blues bars of that city, getting to perform with several veteran blues men (Larry Garner, Tabby Thomas, Raful Neal, and Tab Benoit included) and even performing in the 1994 Baton Rouge Blues Festival. Greg then moved to Virginia and after playing for a year in a Richmond, VA-based blues band, Greg began playing more acoustic guitar and immersing himself in the Appalachian bluegrass and old-time music scene. Also during this time, Greg began exploring his Irish roots and bringing Celtic songs and styles into his repertoire. Greg met Marty in Virginia, the two were married in 1997 and moved to Johnstown in August of that year.

Marty was born in Texas and raised in Arkansas. In her youth, she was attracted to Texas swing fiddling (think Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys) and later moved to East Tennessee where she took up more of a bluegrass style. During this time Marty got to perform on stage with the likes of Del McCoury, Vassar Clements and the late John Hartford. Marty went on to win the bluegrass fiddle competition at the Galax (VA) Old-Time Fiddler’s Convention in 1992 (still the only female winner of that category there), the twin fiddle competition at Union Grove (NC) that same year, and won the bluegrass fiddle competition (and also named best all-around bluegrass performer) at the Maury River Old Time Fiddler’s Convention in 2000.

The multi-talented Ed Hritz is a veteran performer in the Johnstown area where he has performed in bands and played bagpipes at numerous festivities. He greatly compliments Greg and Marty by being able to excel on wind instruments (pipes, whistle and flute), the concertina, and the acoustic bass.

Wayne MacEwan brings rhythm and energy to the group playing percussive instruments and adding a solid backing vocal. Wayne also brings a strong Scottish influence into the mix. Both Ed and Wayne occasionally join Greg and Marty on the road.

Jimmy Crosthwait is a veteran of the Memphis music scene having performed with Jim Dickinson, Sid Selvidge, and Lee Baker in Mudboy and the Neutrons. Jimmy has also appeared on numerous recordings, including several North Mississippi Allstar CDs and was featured on the Sons of Mudboy CD Onward and Upward which was nominated for a Grammy.

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