★★★★ Songlines ★★★★ RnR
“as good an album of top-drawer Irish tradition as is imaginable” RnR
“fabulous flute playing… a masterclass in Irish flute” FolkWorld
“effortless… a peach of a record that demands your attention” Living Tradition
“flawless… a must have for your collection” Irish Music Magazine
Steph Geremia is an Irish multi-instrumentalist and singer highly regarded as one of the finest traditional musicians of her generation. Perhaps best known for her vibrant and versatile Irish flute playing and as a mainstay of the critically acclaimed Irish group, Alan Kelly Gang, she has also impressed as a singer, presenting her own identity of a breathy Celtic vocal style mixed with a hint of her American roots.
After nearly a decade since the release of her debut solo album, The Open Road, which was described by Irish Music Magazine as “an unexpected treasure” June 2018 welcomed the release of Steph’s sparkling second solo release, Up She Flew, which features music from Irelands own rich Sligo, Leitrim & North Connaught tradition. Up She Flew has been described as “a masterclass in Irish flute”, “as good an album of top-drawer Irish tradition as is imaginable” and “a vivid blending of New World energy with Old World vibrancy”, demonstrating once again Steph’s vivacious style, technical prowess, breath control and her ability to bring an innovative approach without losing the heart of the tradition to which she is intrinsically connected. Steph says “for me, everything is in the small details… This album has not only been inspired by the rich North Connaught repertoire and particular tune settings from the players from this region, but also from a time when these great musicians breathed life into the tunes with their slight variations and subtle re-phrasing of every bar; when variations mimicked the landscape and one could get lost in the modal discrepancies, shifting from c’s to c#’s at will… Up she flew and the cock flattened her!” Surrounded by a star studded cast including Seamie O’Dowd (Dervish), Jim Murray (Sharon Shannon Band), Alan Kelly (Eddi Reader Band), Donal O’Connor (At First Light), Martin Brunsden (Hot House Flowers), Jim Higgins (Christy Moore Band), her touring line up also boasts having Scottish powerhouse, Aaron Jones (Old Blind Dogs) on bouzouki/guitar/vocals, fiddle maestro, Ben Gunnery (Riverdance / Barrage) and bodhran legend, John Joe Kelly.
“a vivid blending of New World energy with Old World vibrancy” Songlines
“she proves a formidable ensemble player, providing passages of silvery, lyrical brilliance lifted by superb breath control and dexterous, dancing fingerwork” Songlines
As a founding member of the Alan Kelly Gang with whom she has worked for the past 12 years, Steph has toured extensively around the globe and performed at top world and folk music festivals including WOMADelaide (Australia), Edmonton Folk Festival (Canada), Celtic Connections (Scotland), Milwaukee Irish Fest (USA) and the Guinness Irish Festival (Switzerland). She also periodically tours with the inimitable Scottish songstress Eddi Reader and in the past has toured and performed with critically acclaimed artists including the Grammy award winning Chieftains, Sea Road Sessions, Kris Drever (Lau), Alan Kelly, Ian Carr, Johnny ‘Ringo’ McDonagh (De Dannan), Sean Smyth (Lúnasa), Michael Rooney, John McCusker & Heidi Talbot, Líadan and many more. Steph has also joined forces with prestigious theatre companies from Edinburgh to Galway to the US including Galway’s An Taibhearc and the New York based, award winning & avant-garde, Mabou Mines, in their production of Peter and Wendy, on the original score composed by the late Scottish fiddle player, Johnny Cunningham.
Born in New York, where she first began playing traditional and classical music, Steph emigrated to Ireland in 2001. During her time in America, she studied ‘World Music’ at the prestigious, Wesleyan University at which time she worked with people such as the legendary experimental jazz hero, Anthony Braxton. After a brief stint living in India, studying the Bansuri (North Indian Flute) under PT Ginde, disciple of the legendary Panal al Gosh, Steph moved permanently to County Sligo and further immersed herself in the Sligo/Roscommon style of flute playing. She spent many years surrounded by great traditional stalwarts such as Peter Horan and she holds a Master’s Degree in Traditional Irish Music Performance, which she completed at the University of Limerick. She is now based in Galway where she teaches and performs on a regular basis as well as continuing to tour internationally.
Top Ten Trad Albums of 2009 [The Open Road] Folk World
“Geremia’s spark is undeniable” The Irish Times
“the first voice on the album belongs to Steph Geremia, proving as nuanced and talented a singer as she is a flautist…one of the album’s highlights” Bright Young Folk (UK)
“Her sprightly, breathy style pays homage to the great Peter Horan and that buoyant Sligo flute style to which she has been inexorably drawn.” The Irish Times
“an unexpected treasure…an outstanding recording” Irish Music Magazine