Mick O’Connor

Banjo

Mick O’Connor was born in London and inherited a love of Irish music from his parents who came from County Kerry & Roscommon in Ireland. “The Dubliners” banjo player, Barry McKenna, inspired Mick to learn the Banjo in 1967. He learned tunes from the great London Irish musicians, including John Bowe, Bobby Casey, Tommy McCarthy, and Roger Sherlock, and is particularly influenced by Clare, Galway and Kerry styles of playing.

   Mick won the all-Ireland tenor banjo championship in 1971 and two all-Ireland ceili band medals in 1986 and 1987 as a member of “Thatch Ceili Band”. He toured the USA & Ireland in 1975 and the UK in 1976 with Joe Burke, Paddy Glackin on a tour organised by Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann.. Mick has played in countless concerts and ceili’s over the years, and toured in the U.S.A, Canada, South Africa, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Ireland and elsewhere. He has recorded with some of the greats of Irish music including Paddy Carty, Tommy Makem, Kevin Burke, Brendon Shine, Donal Lunny and Noel Murphy. In 1992 Mick backed Elvis Costello on stage and he performed with Ronnie Drew of “The Dubliners” in 1998.

  Mick was invited to meet Irish President Mary McAleese at a special reception for traditional Irish musicians at her official residence, Áras an Uachtaráin, in Phoenix Park, Dublin April 2004. He received a Bardic Award at the All Ireland Fleadh in Derry Aug 2013 given by Comhaltas in recognition of Mick’s exceptional contribution to the promotion of Ireland’s cultural traditions. 

Mick was one of four Jig Of Life Award winners at a special concert hosted by NYAH Comhaltas Cavan Irish Music in Cavan Town Library 8th March 2019. Mick joined Wraggle Taggle in 1997. 

  Mick continues to run many regular sessions in London and also teaches banjo and mandolin.

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