A New Spin on Irish Fiddling with Eileen Ivers

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Celtic fiddler Eileen Ivers. (Courtesy Eileen Ivers)

When you think of Irish fiddlers, creaky old men sawing away in the corner of musty old pubs come most readily to mind.

Then there's Eileen Ivers.

It’s not for nothing The New York Times dubbed the Grammy Award-winning, Irish-American, virtuoso fiddler “The Jimi Hendrix of the Violin”: She effortlessly careens between playing roots festivals, schools, theaters and symphony halls with a musical style that is at once intimate and panoramic. And Ivers’ collaborators over the years have been equally diverse, ranging from rock icon Patti Smith to classical violinist Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg.

Ivers makes a pitstop at the Raven Performing Arts Theater in Healdsburg on Saturday, Mar. 16, as part of a national tour with the Celtic instrumental quartet JigJam, a group in the newish genre of Irish-inflected bluegrass—or, "I-Grass." Their only other California dates are in Davis (Mar. 17) and Chico (Mar. 18).

It's likely the set will include music from Ivers' latest album, Beyond the Bog Road, which explores the considerable impact of Celtic sounds on North American musical styles like bluegrass, Americana and roots.


Eileen Ivers and JigJam play the Raven Performing Arts Theater in Healdsburg on Saturday, Mar. 16 at 8pm. Details here.