Based in the North of Ireland, Ceólta is an exciting group whose members have many years of experience on the traditional scene. They produce a vibrant sound, playing an array of instruments on self -penned and traditional arrangements.
Ceólta’s three members, Ciaran Mulholland, Paul Mc Kernan and Mark Carmichael, contribute a wealth of experience to the Ceólta sound. Ciaran is a former finalist in the BBC Radio 2 Young tradition award, Paul holds 6 All-Ireland titles on the Uilleann Pipes, while Mark’s former band Camhanach won The Danny Kyle Celtic Connections Award in 2002.
Vocals, Fiddle & other stringed instruments / Ciarán Mulholland
Vocals, Uilleann Pipes & Whistles / Paul McKernan
Vocals, Bagpipes, Uilleann Pipes, Whistles, Guitar & Bouzouki / Mark Carmichael
Ciarán started playing the fiddle from about the age of 11 years old, having found an old 3/4 size fiddle under a bed in his grandmother’s house in Belfast. He was given lessons by Leo McGarry in Stoneyford, and also attended the McPeake Music School in Belfast for a number of years.
Ciarán continued playing music when he went to study in England, finding a vibrant scene in Bath and Bristol. He played in a traditional group playing mostly Irish dance music, touring the south-west of England including the Chippenham Folk Festival.
In 1990, Ciarán was a finalist in the BBC Radio 2 Young Tradition Award, in London. This was a great experience to meet other young musicians including Damien Barber from Norfolk, Ingrid Henderson from Scotland and Pauline Cato from Northumberland.
Ciarán is the regular fiddle player for Haste to the Wedding céilí band based in Larne, playing both Scottish and Irish music for céilíthe throughout and further afield. Ciarán is also a guest musician of the Mull of Kintyre Festival in Campbeltown, appearing in the Dalriada Connections concerts as part of the festival.
Ciarán teaches fiddle music to learners at the Glens of Antrim Comhaltas classes in Glenariffe in the Glens of County Antrim.
Ciarán has recorded his first CD at Glens Music in Cushendun with Seán Quinn and Pete Bouma (guitar). the recording is titled “An Antrim Fiddle” and mainly comprises contemporary tunes written by musicians from County Antrim, including Frank McCollam of Ballycastle.
Paul hails from the southern shores of Lough Neagh in Northern Ireland.
His musical career began by learning the tin whistle at 10. He progressed onto the Uilleann pipes and won 6 All Ireland titles.
In 1995, Paul joined Heritage and toured extensively throughout Ireland, Europe, Scandinavia, the Middle East and North America, playing at many traditional and world music festivals.
A change of musical direction saw Paul become a founder member of Mojokelt, an Irish traditional band blended with rock drums and bass. Mojokelt continued to tour throughout Europe and Scandinavia.
In between playing in various bands, Paul has guest recorded on numerous albums both locally and abroad. His latest guest appearance has seen him record on an Irish/American collaboration with singer/songwriter Bill Booth in Norway, with the album gaining critical acclaim.
His musical diversity has even seen him collaborating with Indian musicians and singers to perform at the Ulster Hall in Belfast.
He also teaches uilleann pipes at various tionóls and continues to play regularly at local seisiúns.
Mark originates from Arrochar and Tarbet on the West Coast of Scotland in the south Highlands and has been around music all his life. His Father Donald is a Highland Piper and Mark followed his Father's footsteps and started learning when he was 8. Mark has been fortunate to have received some of the best tuition in piping. His tutors were Ronnie MacCallum, John Wilson, Willie Morrison, Neil Campbell, Jimmy Kilpatrick, Duncan Johnston, Roddy MacLeod and Gordon Walker. Mark's love affair of traditional music blossomed as he matured and at the age of 18, Mark began playing Celtic Folk Music in Dumbarton Castle for Allied Distillers, playing Whistle, Pipes, Guitar, Vocals and Banjo this start put Mark on the road for bigger things.
Mark formed the band Camhanach and played over Scotland and made appearances on the Radio and TV. The band went through a few changes and in 2002 the band won the 'Danny Kyle Award' at Celtic Connections festival in Glasgow and made an appearance the following year at the Royal Concert Hall. Mark has played with many of the top folk artists in his time whilst living in Scotland and with living in Ireland now, Mark set up Camhanach and recorded an album and played at many concert halls throughout the North. Camhanach also featured on Radio Ulster’s Folk Show with Colm Sands and other radio shows and tv appearances
Mark has now set up the band Ceólta with fellow musicians and friends, Ciarán Mulholland and Paul McKernan.
Mark offers tuition in Piping, Guitar and Vocals; he is also available to do Band/Song writing workshops.
Mark's instruments he plays are: Highland Pipes, Border Pipes, Uilleann Pipes, Singer/Songwriter, Flute, Whistles, Guitar, Bouzouki and Banjo.
Mark has played all over the world and has played at some great events like: T in the Park, Celtic Connections Festival and The Royal Albert Hall.
News & Updates
Some gig news for you. Here are the dates and venues we have so far:
15th December Cafe Fresco in Strabane
21st December Cafe Fresco Strabane
9th May 2019 Sunflower Folk Club Belfast
23rd - 25th August 2019 Mull of Kintyre Festival although still to be confirmed.