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Two launches of a new book on the life and music of Chris Droney

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Hi all,


As promised, here is some information on the release of a new book about the life and music of Chris Droney. Some on this site managed to get a draft pre-release copy when the publisher – Gary Coover – left it on Amazon's sales site for a few minutes too long when we were making some check prints! Amazing the global speed of the internet.


The book is Chris Droney of Bell Harbour and the Tradition of the Concertina in North Clare, by Dan Worrall and Jarrett Branch, with a Foreword by Ann Droney Kirrane. It includes a biography of Chris as well as of his father and grandfather, a tutorial with imbedded recordings of the Droney playing style, and careful transcriptions of over 130 of Chris’s recorded tunes as he played them. The project was a real labor of love, and was put together with the kind assistance of Ann Kirrane and her brother Francis Droney.


The book will have two launches before it is released for online and brick-and-mortar sales: a limited launch in East Texas in March, and the main launch in County Clare in April.


This year’s Palestine Old Time Music and Dulcimer Festival (www.oldpalmusic.com ) occurs March 23-25 in Palestine, a small town in East Texas. The concertina workshop – a part of the larger old time music festival - has occurred every year (excepting Covid!) since 2004. This year the plan is 1) for workshops by Gary Coover (visiting from Honolulu) on playing the Anglo concertina in the harmonic style, on playing for sea shanties, and one workshop for English concertina.  Gary has published several fabulous new books this year, among them The Anglo Concertina Music of Phil Ham (by Gary), and Anglo Concertina from Beginner to Master by Cohen Braithwaite-Kilcoyne, both in the harmonic style. Gary will use excerpts from them, along with his own tutor, Easy Anglo 1-2-3, in his concertina workshops. 2) Dan Worrall and Jarrett Branch will hold two workshops on the Droney/north Clare Anglo concertina style, as well as a complete beginner’s workshop on that style, all utilizing transcriptions from the new Chris Droney book. Old Pal will constitute a limited book launch of it, with copies available at half price for those who attend and place an order in advance for delivery at the festival. Gary’s new books will likewise be available to attendees at half price. No worries, one needn’t purchase any of these, as sheet music will be available for those confirming attendance in advance via email. Please send Dan and/or Gary a message via this website for more information if interested in attending!


The formal launch of this new book on Chris Droney will occur at the 2023 Consairtín (www.consairtin.ie) in Ennis, County Clare the following month (April 13-16). The opening night of Consairtín will kick off with music by Ernestine Healy, followed by the new book’s launch and a celebration of the life and musicianship of Chris Droney. Music and set dancing will be provided for that opening event by the Droney family, including Ann Kirrane and her brother Francis Droney along with musical family and friends, as well as Dan and Jarrett, who will briefly discuss parts of the book in between music segments. The full schedule is available at the Consairtín website. Book copies will be available or purchase at Consairtín, and afterwards will be available for online purchase and at some brick and mortar outlets.


So please do join us at either at Palestine or at Consairtín! It will be great to see you all, and to reminisce about one of the great concertina players of Ireland.


Front cover v. 2.8 compressed.jpg

Edited by Dan Worrall
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8 hours ago, Keith Trobe said:

When will the book be available to buy in the UK?


I think Rollston Press will make it available on Amazon on April 13, the day of the book launch; Amazon prints in both the UK and the US. I know that Gary is sending some copies to Red Cow Music about that same time, so they should be available there in the UK. 

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Dan, were there many editorial changes after the premature copies escaped from Amazon? I haven't noticed anything in mine that would have called for editing, but I'm curious. I look forward to meeting you at Consairtín.



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Yes, there were some changes....the wait was good so that we could shake them out. Some blown key signatures, missing repeats....minor stuff. And a few cosmetics. Authors are always their own worst critics, and I am no exception....but perfection is of course something for the next world. At Consairtin they will be sold at a quite heavy discount - we want to get them in people's hands - so your might find it cheap enough to upgrade!


Looking forward to meeting you there.


All the best,


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