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The Kane Sisters
From North Connemara, Liz and Yvonne Kane, known as The Kane Sisters, are much respected musicians and educators. Born in Letterfrack, they were educated in Kylemore Abbey School. They were taught music by their grandfather, local fiddle player, Jimmy Mullen and Mary Finn, a Co.Sligo musician and teacher.
Liz, an All-Ireland Senior Fiddle Champion and Yvonne first came to national and international prominence during the three year period in which they toured with accordion player, Sharon Shannon as members of her band, The Woodchoppers. They travelled all over the world with her band and are featured artists on Sharon’s album ‘The Diamond Mountain Sessions’. At that time, a Hot Press review by Siobhan Long confirmed ‘...while 'Fire in their Bellies' (with Liz and Yvonne Kane) is ensemble playing at its best and most naked.'
Following this period of touring with Sharon Shannon, the girls decided to embark musically on their own and they recorded their first album together entitled ‘The Well Tempered Bow’. This received rave reviews including this review from well known New York music critic, Earle Hitchner:
“Aptly titled, 'The Well-Tempered Bow' is fine-honed unison fiddling by two musicians who know how to draw out the heat and light within a melody. There's no superficial flashiness substituting for a more difficult-to-achieve understanding of what makes a tune tick. This duo debut has real depth and heft, with superb accompaniment from guitarist and pianist John Blake, a member of the band Téada. The Kanes Head Up Best Traditional Albums of 2002”
The Kane Sisters toured Ireland and the United States following the release of their first album and this followed with a second album entitled ‘Under the Diamond’ in 2004 and “Side by Side” along with concertina player Edel Fox. Based in Letterfrack currently, Liz and Yvonne teach music during the school year and tour in the US during the summer. Between them, they have close to 200 students and travel all over the west coast teaching music.