Irish Traveller, Singer and Storyteller

Thomas McCarthy

YARN Storytelling Festival is thrilled to welcome Thomas McCarthy to the the stage at Mermaid for the first time.

Irish Traveller, Singer and Storyteller Thomas McCarthy is passionate about his heritage and keeping stories of his ancestors alive. Join him as he shares both songs and stories he has learned from his family which have been passed down through the generations.

Thomas comes from Birr in County Offaly in Ireland. His family are the McCarthys who settled there generations ago. Thomas comes from a long line of old traditional singers and musicians who kept the tradition of singing strong. He was named Traditional Singer of the Year in the Gradam Ceoil Awards 2019.

‘The greatest Irish traditional singer in fifty years.’

Joe Power, Na Conneries Singing Club, Waterford

‘I was immediately blown away by his beautifully controlled yet profoundly moving performance.’

Ron Kavana, Irish Singer/Songwriter

‘It's a rare delight these days to come across a singer like Thomas, who has grown up within oral tradition, learning songs in the old way directly from his family and the interlinked families of the travelling community in Ireland and England. Thomas' intricate ornamented style, with his passion for the songs and deep feeling for their history, reconnects us with centuries of oral culture.’

Peta Webb, Singer and Organiser of the Musical Traditions Club, London