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The Troubles / Blog

Meet and Greet

C'mon up to Eckley Miner's Village this Saturday and you'll not only get to hear The Troubles but you'll get to meet our new bandmate, Derek Seiger!

Derek is a talented and experienced young musician who has not only played with several bands but has studied music formally as well as informally. His primary instrument has always been the drum but a few years ago, he branched out into guitar.

And yesterday at rehearsal, Derek told us that he's been researching his roots and lo and behold, if there isn't some Irish on his Daddy Roy's side of the family.

Paul and I are looking forward to new sounds and new roads ahead for The Troubles with the addition of Derek's talents.


A couple early Summer outdoor gigs coming up - we'd love to see some of you!

Sunday, June 14th, Paul and I will be back on one of our favorite turfs - The Clover Grounds in beautiful Irish Valley, Heckschersville, Pa - for Irish Heritage Day. The Cass Township AOH is now hosting the event. The Troubles are playing from 12 - 1:30ish. We're also running one of my Finnegans Wakes. I'll be directing and performing in the Wake and so will Nooners. Check out our upcoming show info for more.

Later in June, Saturday, June 28th, The Troubles will be back at another one of our favorite haunts, Eckley Miners Village, right outside Hazelton for their annual Patch Days.

Hope to see you somewhere!

T'was Down the Glen One Easter Morn...

This weekend marks the beginning of the century since the 1916 Easter Uprising in Ireland that began the liberation of Ireland after a long and brutal military occupation by English troops. Remember Ireland's dead and those who gave their lives to free their country. And while the six remain occupied and the fight to unite them with the other 26 counties goes on, we must thank the men and women of the 1916 Rebellion who "bore the fight that freedom's light might shine through the Foggy Dew". Wear your Easter Lilly proudly and never ever forget the men and women from whom you are sprung. We who are of Ireland - especially those of us whose families were torn from their mother country during An Gorta Mor - will always feel a bond with Ireland no matter where we chanced to be born. As we enter the Anniversary of the 1916 Easter Uprising, there shall be many opportunities for those of you who do not know Irish history to learn more about it. Take every opportunity. Have a glorious Easter and a wonderful start to Springtime! Listen to more Irish music - and support your local Irish band whoever they might be!! We are - all of us who play this wonderful music - blessed with a desire to keep the music of our culture alive and vibrant. Just as those who fought - and continue to fight - for Irish freedom, Irish musicians fight our own fight to make certain the folk songs and ballads - and the stories within them - are never forgotten. The bards and storytellers of old Ireland kept Irish history, legend, language, religion, and culture alive during the English occupation and today's Irish musicians are no different. We will not let our culture and our history be forgotten. We will never, ever forget!

Thank you!!

The Troubles just want to say thank you to all the folks who supported us during the High and Holy Days of St. Patrick. It's one of our favorite times of the year and no better time to share our music. We enjoyed every one of our gigs - so thanks to those who invited us to play at your establishment, party, or event. We partnered with the fantastic dancers from the McCormmick School of Irish Dance at the Tamaqua Arts Center again this year and raised some money for the American Cancer Society. We took the stage at the beautiful Majestic Theatre in downtown Pottsville for the first time and though the crowd was small, they were a wonderful audience. We had a wonderful time the Thursday before helping out fellow author, Mickey Getty, as she debuted her Coal Region Molly Maguire novel, SOOT, at the Speckled Hen in Reading, Pa. Mickey and I got to know each other when I was writing my Molly Maguire novel, The Pipes Are Calling. It was a fabulous opportunity to share our original coal region Irish music, all of which is available on the CD we put together when Patrick still played with us, Coal Cracker Irish. Naturally, The Troubles are still doing all those songs. The majority of the CD, except for Pat's song, Coal Mule Jig, were written by me. Paul and I have worked hard to change up the arrangements to suit our duo. We also brought our coal cracker Irish music to the St. Clair Historical Society through a presentation on Irish Wakes and Funerals. Those of you who know my penchant with writing, directing, and performing Finnegans Wakes must be giggling at how perfect a topic choice that was! How gracious a reception we had that evening!! It was a packed house - and what a fun group!! The two of us had a blast. A special thank you to the Michael Collins AOH in Mechanicsburg for their hospitality to two fellow Hibernians when we played at their St. Patrick's Party. It was truly a pleasure - and we wouldn't turn down an invitation to come back and play again. Slainte to you all! I'm looking out my front door this day before Easter and thought windy and cool, it's obvious Spring has finally arrived. A short couple weeks ago, we doubted it ever would as we waited patiently for the snow to stop the night before the Girardville parade! But stop that night it did - after a good 8 inches - and through the efforts of some amazing people and a nod from St. Patrick (and maybe a few others up there) the streets magically were cleared of that frozen white stuff and the parade went on with us in it. There we go. We've started to take bookings for the summer season and have a couple gigs lined up, one of which will be a return to Eckley Miners Village and Museum, one of Pennsylvania's treasures. We had a great time there last year and perhaps some of you will join us there again on Saturday, June 27 for Patch Days. In the meantime, give us a holler if you're in the market for an Irish band. We'd love to work with you! Slainte!


Darn snow! We've had to reschedule our show for tonight with Mickey Getty at The Speckled Hen in Reading due to this fickle and rather unpredictable weather! Not to worry! We'll be there next week, same times, on Thursday 3/12/15 followed by shows at the Majestic Theatre on Friday, 3/1 3/15, the Mechanicsburg AOH Michael Collins Division 1 St. Patrick's Party on Saturday, 3/14/15, and The Tamaqua Center for the Arts with our dear friends and wonderful dancers, The McCormick School of Irish Dance, on Sunday 3/15/15 with proceeds benefitting the American Cancer Society. Monday, 3/16/15, The Troubles will be bringing Irish music and a wee bit of St. Patrick's Day cheer to our senior friends at Providence Place in Pottsville at 7pm, then on Wednesday, 3/18/15, we will be at the St. Clair Historical Society for a presentation of Irish Wakes and Funerals by yours truly and songs about Irish wakes and funerals by The Troubles. You know we Irish take our wakes and funerals seriously - but the songs we write about them - not so much. Finally, on Saturday, March 21st, we finish up our March madness with the Best and Biggest Little St. Patrick's Day Parade of all - the 12th Annual AOH Girardville St. Patrick's Day Parade in the historic little town of Girardville, Pa. We hope you are all staying warm and if we all THINK GREEN, I just know that St. Patrick will hear us and take pity on our frozen little fingers and toes and bring us an early spring. Damn Groundhog. See you all - we hope - at one of our March shows and remember, keep the Irish culture alive and listen to more Irish music. We'll have our all original CD, Coal Cracker Irish, available for purchase at all our upcoming shows. Give us a holler if you want to get more information on any of our shows, book an event, or find out more about our original Irish and coal region music and our fiercely independent band, The Troubles. We're just a little band with a mission - to keep Irish music and our Irish culture alive and in our hearts - and yours.

Right Around the Corner

Spring is right around the corner and that can only mean St. Patrick's Day is too!

Two Shorten the Road

Two shorten the road enjoyably when the company is good but if we can't have a travel companion on our journeys, music is the universal substitute. Irish music is particularly suited to sojourning, strolling, sauntering, sashaying, sightseeing, sprinting, and the occasional segwaying. Be sure to load up your favorites before you hit the highways and byways. It won't be long till winter's gone. St. Brigid's Day is in less than a month, St. Valentine's shortly thereafter - and after that, St. Patrick's will be right around the corner. So crank up the heat, crank up the music and bring on the craic! Think Spring! The shamrocks won't be far behind. And don't forget to call and book that Irish band you've been thinking about for your upcoming St. Patrick's Day and Irish Culture month celebrations. Check out our original song "On Great Ships" about the Irish immigrants who came to America during the famine years.

Change is Nothing if Not Inevitable

The Troubles are undergoing a brief musical metamorphosis so some of the information and content on our webpages will be changing. Change in inevitable. Embrace the energy. Cherish the moment. Listen to more Irish music. An old ballad goes like this... O Kind Friends and Companions Come join me in rhyme And lift up your voices In Chorus with mine Let's drink and be merry All Grief to restrain For we may and might never All meet here again...

Remembering Woodstock

45 years ago, this upcoming weekend, half a million young people and a group of musicians never to be seen the like of again, descended on the small rural town of Bethel, NY, for three unforgettable days and showed the world that peace, love, and music are an unbeatable combination. It was the music festival that changed the world. Those artists who performed went on to become legends. Remembering all those who dreamed it, built it, attended it, played at it - especially those who have moved on to party at that big festival in the sky...Ritchie, Jimi, Janis, Johnny, among others - and especially all those who will keep the dream alive when they return to Bethel, NY this weekend to continue the tradition of peace, love, and music that has been acclaimed around the world for the last four and a half decades. Woodstock '45 is alive and well....it's time to get ourselves back to the garden. Blessings to Michael Lang and Artie Kornfeld for their visionary efforts - both are reportedly making the pilgrimage to Bethel this weekend - thank you. Without both of you, none of it would have been possible. See some of you there - I'll be taking a break from my beloved Irish music this weekend to get back to my rock and roll roots. May the message of Woodstock live forever...


The Troubles have reached 50,000 plays! Thank you!!