Irish duo will be returning to Australia for the third time in February to perform six concerts.
The duo who are renowned for their vocal harmonies and their modern Celtic sound will be performing their Echoes album along with band mates Nicole Hudson and Cian Sweeney.
The focus of the album according to Neil is the stories and places that have inspired and shaped the band particularly during their formative years.
“All of the songs and echoes were written about our past, our childhoods, living in Ireland and the places we love in Ireland”.
“It’s going to be great to come down to Australia and talk about all of the stories and subjects behind the songs… we are writing songs about the things that we love and that are apart of us”.
Both Neil and Ryan feel a strong connection with their Australian fans and their Echoes tour of Australia is known as the Home from Home tour.
“We always feel like we are home from home when we come to Australia… because we get such a great reception”.
“The Australian people have always been so welcoming to us and we love coming back because we really do have a connection with Australia… there is a definite comradery”.
They believe that their music resonates with their fans throughout the world due to the simplicity and beauty of Celtic music.
“Celtic music transcends across anywhere. There is something very very deep about it.”
“Celtic songs have lasted the test of time because they are so beautiful… there is a beautiful feel to these songs which grip people”.
The band performed their Echoes album in its entirety in front of a small Kanas City audience which was recorded by filmmaker Michael McGlinn.
McGlinn then followed the duo back to Ireland to explore the places and experiences that shaped the songs on their album leading to the release of their musical documentary Echoes: The Story
“The common thread that we kept hitting on when we writing this album was subjects of our upbringings and our experiences in Ireland”.
“We found that our audiences love hearing the stories behind our songs so we thought it would be a really good idea to release a film documentary”.
“People respond to the honesty of it because they can see and they know that we are writing about our lives and passions”.
The documentary has received commercial and critical success including three nominations at the World Music and International Film Festivals.
Neil has also found that watching the documentary back has not only influenced how the whole group responds to music but also their creative processes when songwriting.
“It (the documentary) has changed my approach to music and to song writing. Ryan and I have spoken about this at length and it’s wonderful to approach a song and put music to something you are passionate about”.
“When it comes to playing these songs live, you have an imagery behind the song while you are singing it and when you are singing about these places it brings you back to those feelings and memories”.
2018 will be another busy year for Byrne and Kelly with the band looking to write and record more material for a second originals album along with a retreat in May for their American fans.
For more information including upcoming tour dates and ticket availability visit www.byrneandkelly.com.
Interview by Ainslie Mulholland
Photography by Brendan Duffy.
10 Readers CommentedJoin discussion
The music Neil and Ryan write is always so heart felt, which is one of the reasons they are so loved. And with their great good looks, a winning combo!
You cannot help but be touched by this duo’s music, it comes from the heart and their experiences. Love them!
Since I discovered them last year I am completely addicted to Byrne and Kelly. They are so talented and handsome, they have loving personnalities, ce sont de belles âmes. Their album Echoes is a masterpiece, music, lyrics, arrangement, performance, I am listening to them every day without exception. This duet deserves to have millions of listerners. I like Ryan Kelly- so male but so humble and so talented- but I am crazy about Neil. I like everything about Neil: his voice when he speaks and when he sings, his music, his talent as song-writer, his face, his smile, his look, his suavity.
Because of him I had to learn English in order to know everything that is written about him and to understand him when he speaks in the videos. I learned also the terrible History of Ireland; I also learned that the Irish are considered the nicest people in Europe.
It’s the first time in my life that I am a fan of a singer. I read a lot of comments on Youtube and Facebook where people said that Byrne and Kelly’s music or Celtic thunder helped them through a difficult time. That’s exactly what happened to me. This is the first time I can communicate with them because I don’t like social networks and so I want to tell : Je t’adore Neil et je te souhaite tout les succès et tout le bonheur du monde. Byrne and Kelly, mes adorables Irlandais vos êtes les meilleurs, soyez bénis, continuez à répandre le bonheur autour de vous, merci d’exister.
I love Neil and Ryan. They make fantastic music. I have never got to see them in concert. But I sure hope to get to this year.
I am heartbroken! got an email yesterday saying their performance in Merced in May was canceled “due to low ticket sales”! Can’t believe it!
It is the lot of independent artists not to be known by big crowds. They do not have all the support of the music industry that manages to pass a crow for a nightingale. This does not prevent them from drawing their path day after day and seeing their audience grow accordingly. You only need to hear them once to be hooked for your entire life.
I wonder why they never made a musical tour in Europe, if only in France where Celtic music is very popular and where there is a Celtic community in Brittany.
Having the opportunity to see B & K live is a privilege I will never know, so ladies who can do it, enjoy !
It’s funny, it’s the first time I send a comment in English, I have not finished my language learning. Je vous aime, peuple d’Irlande.
My family tree goes back for years to the Irish ancestry. My grandparents on both sides are from Ireland. I know their stories, I understand how they got to the USA. I love the Irish people and their music. What Neil and Ryan are doing in their music… I get it and I love it. They are a joy to listen to when performing. It’s a great duo, great music and the cherry on top is all the Craic!! Can’t say enough good things about Byrne and Kelly!!
Neil and Ryan have allowed their “hugely fast-growing family of fans” the rare luxury of getting to know them personally, through their heartfelt music and desire to do more and more for us, as we encourage their brilliance and mutual admiration.. The symbiotic love shown on each side, has brought new linear knowledge, peace, harmony and respect for our roots and common human emotions. We could not love them more.
Neil and Ryan continue to grow and make more beautiful music together. Along with Peter Sheridan and Nicole Hudson, each song meshes together and lifts me up with their music, talent, and tremendous humor. Everyone should have exposure to Byrne and Kelly, it will be one of the kindest things you can do for yourself!
Neil, your life itself is a legend that you write day after day on the chords of your guitar along the road of the tours, who will write the song?
Tell your father who knew what he was doing when he put a guitar in your hands when you were a child: bravo, well done, you got what you wanted and you can be proud of you and your son, this wonderful singer, guitarist and songwriter so loved by his fans. And you are so beautiful.