Carousel Sessions present - The Good Mixer.

Manchester Irish Festival 2019

Chorlton Irish Club have yet another amazing night in store for you with their famous Carousel Sessions. Noel O'Grady, Henry Benagh, John Carty and Marcus Hernon are coming together to play tracks from an album recorded in 1989.

How can a CD which was recorded over twenty five years ago be a contender in the 2015 traditional album of the year? Well that is exactly the case with the album ‘The Good Mixer’ which was launched last year. This new CD is named after a pub in Camden Town, London, called the Good Mixer which was famous for its Irish music sessions in the late 1980s. At that time the session which featured Henry Benagh on fiddle, Marcus Hernon on flute, John Carty on banjo and Noel O'Grady on bouzouki was held on stage and amplified, though there were no announcements just high octane music played amongst friends straight from the hip.

The lads played to a packed house every Saturday night with traditional music players and enthusiasts from all over the capital congregating there. It was also the ‘go to’ spot for anyone with an interest in the music passing through London. When the long time session at the venue came to an end in 1989 the group got together for the last time at John Carty’s house and recorded as much as would fit into an afternoon (with Bernadette McCarthy providing piano on some tracks).

The recording has lain more or less forgotten since that time, but John was recently asked about it and was surprised at how fresh it still is twenty five years on. The sound is lively and tight and is simply the product of a group of musicians who played regularly one night a week for the love of it. It is a perfect reminder of what the pure drop was sounding like a generation ago.

The Good Mixer is an utterly brilliant album that lovers of Irish music (and of session playing in particular) will want to know about, not just because it’s an important historical document, but because the music it contains is electrifying. This is one of the best albums of traditional Irish you’re likely to come across. The music is raw and driving with a spirit that tells a story about Irish music in London at a particular moment in time. The recording will surely bring back memories for those who were lucky enough to experience the Good Mixer in the 1980s, but it also gives the rest of us a beguiling taste of what it was like to be there. Definitely one for the collection – Daniel Neely, Irish Echo, New York"

Tickets are available from this site (just click register), and from the Club. They are £10.50 for adults and £5.50 for Under 16s. Doors are at 8.30pm with support provided by Ange Durcan and Joe Bardwell