Blackstone Cúil (pronounced Kool) is now a four-piece band performing unique arrangements of Irish traditional and contemporary songs, as well as original music. The term Irish Mod was coined to describe the special style of Celtic music the band has developed, not too light, not too heavy, NEVER boring. Blackstone Cúil has a big sound perfect for festivals, rattles the rafters of rock clubs, and performs with the lush dynamics fitting for theatres.
Price Range: Contact for rates
What to Expect
Blackstone Cuil presents high energy, surprisingly new arrangements of traditional Irish music and many new songs and tunes composed by Mike Ladd. Mike is devoted to his Irish heritage: his original music is written from the heart, and sounds like music written from the hills of Ireland. Traditional songs are played with modern juxtapositions of fiddle tunes carried by John Guertin's drumming, Myra MacLeod's fiddle and viola and our latest member, Steve Harnois on Bass. Our arrangements will surprise and entertain.
Mike Ladd - Vocals, Guitars
Mike Ladd has been a strong presence in central Massachusetts for more than thirty years. As a founding member of the regionally popular Chimera, the EP Coming Into Color was released in 1985 and the band appeared in an episode of the television series “Spenser For Hire”. In the 1990’s Ladd published The Auricle, an art and poetry magazine showcasing New England artists. Throughout the decade of the 1990’s, Ladd was a member of Critics, Cynics, Antagonists; Leslie Buck & the Change; and No We Don’t; as well as writing and performing both solo and with his own ensemble The Ladd Foundation. His first full length CD, The Storm, was critically acclaimed throughout the northeast. Mike Ladd is also included on The Old Vienna Tapes Vol. 1, a live showcase of artists’ performances at the famed Old Vienna Kaffeehaus; and the Ladd Foundation appears on the Iggy Pop tribute collection I Wanna Be A Stooges from Revenge Records. In this new century, Mike Ladd was a member of the funk and R&B band The Valves through 2009 and performed with them all over New England; subsequently he fronted the rock band Wistah in 2011. Ladd has written for The Journal of Music in Ireland (JMI), performs solo, and fronts the Irish Mod band Blackstone Cúil ((link hidden)).
Myra MacLeod - Fiddle
Born and raised in Dorchester, Massachusetts, Myra MacLeod has been immersed in music her entire life. At the age of five, she began her musical studies at the South End Music Center. In the 1970's, she began her performance career in the richly creative Cambridge-Boston folk scene. She has performed at weddings, festivals, regional coffee houses, contra dances, and local restaurants, as a solo musician as well as a member of groups such as Ladd and MacLeod, Riverbend, Frosty Morn, Patchwork, and Fergus. Artists such as Chuck and Mud, Denis Coughlin, and John Michaels have added Myra's unique sound to their own CDs, citing the need for that extra "special something."
In the mid 1990's, Myra was asked to develop a folk music program as part of the curriculum for the Performing Arts School of Worcester. Now a certified Suzuki violin instructor, she has a complete independent student roster. She successfully developed a group, the Frog Point Fiddlers, devoted to children and their love of the music. Spirited youths, given the opportunity to learn and perform together in the Worcester area and surrounding communities in an environment where they are encouraged to gain performance experience, won the hearts and applause of every audience with the lively and engaging style of their performances.
Her musical style has often been described as "eclectic," "visionary," and "surreal." Bringing an accessible, grass roots approach to music making, Myra is perfectly suited to the art of the violin.
Johnny Guertin - Drums, Bodhran, Percussion
Johnny Guertin has been playing drums & percussion in local and regional acts for over thirty years. His high-energy style has earned him the nickname Johnny Thunder. Along with Mike Ladd, John was a member of Chimera throughout the 1980’s, which released the critically acclaimed “Coming Into Color” EP, appeared on the television series Spenser For Hire, and supported a number of national acts, among them The Joe Perry Project, John Waite, and Los Lobos. In the 90’s, John was with Leslie Buck & the Change and Change of Hart, two of New England’s top cover bands.
He also contributed to local funk/R&B band No We Don’t and The Ladd Foundation. Since 1999 , John has been a team member and has played percussion and does graphic design with the band Orleans (Still the One; Dance With Me) and studies Irish bodhran. John and Mike are happy to be back together in Blackstone Cúil, in which John employs all of his various talents.
Steve Harnois - Bass
Bio to follow...
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