One for the Foxes, who will be performing June 7 at The War Memorial in Grosse Pointe Farms, consists of, from left, Tadgh Ó Meachair, Joanna Hyde and Dave Curley.

One for the Foxes, who will be performing June 7 at The War Memorial in Grosse Pointe Farms, consists of, from left, Tadgh Ó Meachair, Joanna Hyde and Dave Curley.

Photo provided by The War Memorial


Irish band puts modern spin on traditional music

By: K. Michelle Moran | Grosse Pointe Times | Published May 29, 2018

GROSSE POINTE FARMS — Irish eyes will be smiling when the trio One for the Foxes makes its metro Detroit debut June 7 at The War Memorial in Grosse Pointe Farms.

The band blends Irish, American and other folk music styles for a sound that’s at once traditional and modern.

One for the Foxes consists of Dave Curley on vocals, guitars, banjo and mandolin; Tadgh Ó Meachair (pronounced “Tyge O’Maher”) on piano and piano accordion; and Joanna Hyde on vocals and fiddle. While he’s been based in Chicago for the last 10 years, Curley is originally from Galway, Ireland, while Ó Meachair is from Dublin. Hyde is a native of Denver, but she and Ó Meachair — who are married — now both live in Dublin.

All of the musicians had already established themselves with other acts — Curley in SLIDE and Runa, Ó Meachair in Goitse and Hyde in The Hydes — before teaming up. Curley, who is also an award-winning Irish dancer, met Ó Meachair at the University of Limerick. He was a guest artist on One for the Foxes’ self-titled debut CD, which came out last year, but he has recently joined the band as its third member. One for the Foxes was starting its first American tour May 30, Curley said by phone from Chicago.

“It’ll be a balance between originals and traditional music,” Curley said of the June 7 show. “Most of our music is interactive, so we encourage people to clap along and get involved. We try to engage (the audience) and not just stand there.”

Curley said the band is named after a song Ó Meachair and Hyde wrote for a family of foxes they saw playing in their backyard.

“It’s always a difficult thing, trying to figure out what to call yourself,” Curley said.

All of the members of One for the Foxes write, and Curley said Hyde and Ó Meachair also pen instrumental works that resemble “mini classical pieces.” Hyde grew up with bluegrass and Texas swing music, while Curley and Ó Meachair were raised listening to and playing Irish and folk music. Curley said the band draws links between traditional Irish music and American folk songs.

“My (early musical experience) would have been in my primary school,” Curley said. “Regular teachers in the school system would teach Irish instruments. We would learn the tin whistle as part of our curriculum, and Irish dance as part of our curriculum.”

In Ireland, “You’re surrounded by music,” Curley said.

“It’s just everywhere,” he continued. “Any occasion, it ends in a (sing-along). You’re forever surrounded by music, and if you’re interested in it, you’ll pick up an instrument or start dancing. … I used to look very forward to my dance class in school. It was kind of this exciting time when you got to burn off some energy and get away from something that might seem more like labor.”

War Memorial concertgoers will be able to buy the One for the Foxes CD as well as “A Brand New Day,” a CD by Curley and Mick Broderick.

Besides The War Memorial concert, One for the Foxes will also perform at the Irish Music Festival in Muskegon in September, Curley said. He’s performed at the festival before with other artists.

“It’s an amazing festival,” Curley said.

He said they’re looking forward to their upcoming Michigan shows.

“(Michigan audiences) seem to really invest and get involved with the music,” Curley said.

War Memorial officials are excited about presenting this concert.

“It’s a great point of pride to offer a wide breadth of programming at The War Memorial, and the appearance of One for the Foxes is an exciting addition to our already diverse performing arts season,” Brooks Hoste, The War Memorial’s senior director of community engagement, said via email. “In 2018, we’ve heard music ranging from classical to jazz to Broadway to pop — and now we’re able to add an authentic experience in world music to the repertoire.”

Donations by individuals and businesses have made programs like this possible, say War Memorial officials.

“We’re incredibly thankful to the generous sponsors of our 2018 performing arts series, Valerie and Patrick Moran,” Hoste said in an email. “Their support of the arts is inspiring and very well appreciated.”

The War Memorial is located at 32 Lake Shore Road in Grosse Pointe Farms. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m., and the concert will start at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $25 for regular admission and $15 for veterans and students with identification. For tickets or more information, visit www.warmemorial.org or call (313) 881-7511.