Seven-time All-Ireland champion Button Accordion player John Whelan will be performing in concert Nov 25th at Phinney Center, 7:30pm. John just finished a cross-country tour this Summer that completed a solo tour he had started in 2020 to celebrate 50 years of playing professionally, and has recorded more than 15 CDs which have sold over 1 million copies.
John has performed and recorded with the cream of Irish musicians, starting with his most famous partnership with Eileen Ivers. Eileen and several others John has played with and mentored, such as Hayley Richardson and Patrick Mangan, went on to become famous in shows such as Riverdance. John’s all-around musicianship has seen him perform and tour with non- Celtic bands such as Low Lily, with Lissa Schneckenburger and Flynn Cohen, and he has performed at many high profile US Irish Festivals.
John will be joined by fiddler Dale Russ, who has been a mainstay of the Seattle Traditional Irish music scene since he moved here in the 70s. He has been a member of a number of traditional Irish musical groups, and in 1990 he was invited to perform at the first Boston College Irish Music Festival “Love is in America”; featuring 16 of the finest Irish fiddle players living in the States. The concert was recorded and released by Green Linnet Records and won an award from the Smithsonian Institute as “Traditional Recording of the Year” His playing is known for its balance of power and elegance.
“Whelan has a special way with accordion. He doesn’t just play tunes, he manages to get inside a melody and wring every ounce of feeling from within, a tough thing to do on an accordion … this is music at its best.” – FLIRTING WITH THE EDGE review, Irish Edition
“His soulful playing revives an instrument unnecessarily reviled for too long.” – CELTIC CROSSROADS review, LA Times