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Frank Emerson: News

January 2017 Update - January 4, 2017

January 2017 Update

Hello and best wishes for the happiest, most prosperous, most peaceful - and any more superlatives that apply to you – of new years. (Though I’ve got to admit, it’s hard to believe it’s the year 2017. That just doesn’t sound quite right to me. But then again, nothing has sounded quite right to me since I found out that the Easter Bunny didn’t actually lay eggs. That was a shocker, let me tell you. And my wife was bummed out too!)

Anyway, to the matter at hand.

I’m happy to be kicking off the new year with an 8-DAY stint at Kevin Barry’s in Savannah (912-233-9626) It’ll go 9-16 January. Every night except Sunday, I’ll be going on at 8:00 PM. On Sunday, there is the traditional open session that runs from about 6:30-8:30 PM (I’ll take the stage around 8:45 ish). As usual the session is anchored and hosted by the Savannah Ceilidh Band. Everyone is welcome to come and participate or just listen to some pretty much traditional Celtic music.

[By the way, the rest of this week (4-8 January) at Kevin Barry’s, Dublin’s Fran Doyle will be holding forth.]

So that’s that. I hope you can join us all for some fine food and drink, some laughs maybe some cries (and not just from the bum notes, which a few and far between, mind you) and some lively, though-provoking chats. A great craic altogether.

Special note: a belated happy 55th anniversary/birthday to the U.S. Navy SEALS. This outfit was officially constituted by President John F. Kennedy on 1 January 1962..

Please join me in keeping a thought and/or a prayer for our troops and our guardians in blue, khaki and green.

All the best for now and God bless


PS. Drop note or an e-mail or message whenever you like at Facebook, or Incidentally a lot of my music can be downloaded at (search name: frank emerson)

NOV-DEC Update - November 26, 2016

Hello to Everyone –

Just a quick note this time as I’m feeling a little Punky Brewster. Spent a little too much time a few days ago in a hospital waiting room – otherwise known as a human Petri dish and so even though the checkup went fine, I brought home a little souvenir.

Anyway, to the point: I hope everyone had a pleasant, peaceful and fulfilling Thanksgiving and that all your teams won handily following pitched and energetic athletic competition.

Coming up, I’ve got a couple of decent gigs:

1. 29 November – 3 December (Tuesday – Saturday), I’ll be at Christy and Martin Marron’s fairly new venue: Grace O’Malley’s. It’s at 211 Granby Street, Norfolk, VA 23510 (757-333-3330). Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, I go from 8-12, while Friday & Saturday I go from 9-1. I’m really excited to be appearing there. I’ve seen the place and it’s beautiful. All reports have it that the food is wonderful and that the place promises to be a great success
2. 5-11 December (Monday – Sunday), I’ll be at the best listening room in the states and winner of the most authentic Irish Pub award from Irish Pubs Global, Kevin Barry’s – 117 W. River Street, Savannah, GA 31401. On 7 December, we’ll be observing and remembering that this is the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, which brought the USA into World War II. The entertainment schedule is such that Monday through Saturday, I go on at 8:00 PM. Sunday, I go on following the open session, which runs from about 6:30 to about 8:30ish. I go on at about 8:45ish or there abouts. The session, as always, is all-welcoming and is ably hosted and anchored by the Savannah Ceilidh Band.

Here’s hoping I get a chance to share some songs, stories laughs and a drink or two with you at one or both of these venues. Incidentally, I’ll have some copies of “A Christmas Postcard” for sale with me. They make good shtalking shtuffers (insert shmiley faish here). It’s a record I did with Carroll Brown and Harry O’Donoghue a few years ago. Also, you can download any of my records in their entirety or as singles at CD Baby.

Drop a note or comment at or at my Facebook page or e-mail:, if you feel like it. I look forward to hearing from you. Oh, by the way, there’s a new book in the works. I’ll tell you about it when I get a bit closer to publishing.

That’s about it from here. Take care now and a premature Merry Christmas. Please keep our troops in prayer and thought.


October Update 2016 - October 12, 2016

October 2016

Hello Out There -

I hope that you were able to persevere through Hurricane Matthew in the most reasonable shape possible. My sympathy for and condolences to those who had to suffer any losses. This was one for the books, alright. Let’s pray for no more of these things. Deal?

To this update then:

Congratulations to Kevin Barry’s Pub for winning the Most Authentic Irish Pub award in the world-wide contest conducted by the Dublin-based Irish Pub Global organization. There were over 1,000 entries from all over the world. In addition, the pub was also one of the finalists in the Pub of the Year and Marketing Campaign categories. Not only that, but our Brian Tillman was one of the finalists in the Bartender of the Year category (You wuz robbed.!) Any way, all-around congratulations to Vic Power and everyone involved. I’m flattered and proud to know you and be associated with you.

Speaking of Kevin Barry’s, I’ll be back on stage there 17-23 October. Monday thru Saturday, I start warbling at 8:00 and go on until whenever. On Sunday, I follow the open session, which is anchored by Seldom Sober and the Savannah Ceilidh Band. The session, at which you’re all invited to participate, runs from about 6:30 thru *:30 or so. I take the stage at 8:45ish or thereabouts and play until whenever yet again.

Just as an aside, congratulations and best of luck to Glyn Cozart and Brendan Chaney on the occasion of their nuptials on 15 October. This, of course, was the result of persistent pleading, begging, whining and groveling on the part of the new groom. (Get used to it Bren!)

That’s about it for now. Drop a line, an email or a Facebook contact, when you feel like it. Have a look and listen to my website. Better yet, drop in to Kevin Barry’s and we can share a few, songs, stories, laughs and drinks.

Please keep in mind our men and women in uniforms of all sorts.

Best for now,


Award for Kevin Barry's - October 3, 2016

September Update - September 14, 2016

Hello Everyone –

Hope everyone is doing well, feeling well and as the Dave Clark Five would put it, “Glad All Over”. Doing OK myself – good doctor’s checkup (he seemed fine to me) and trying to keep one step ahead of the talent police.

On that musical note I’m anxious to get back to Kevin Barry’s this coming week: 19-25 September. I’ll be following James (JJ) Smith who is there at the moment. Following me will be Cahir O’Doherty .

As the usual schedule goes: Monday – Saturday, I go on at 8:00 PM. Sunday, I go on following the session. The open session, which is anchored by the Savannah Ceilidh Group, generally goes from 6:30 to 8:30 or a little later. Then I go on at about 8:45 or a little later.

An F.Y.I moment here…and a kind of exciting one at that. See this note from Tara Reese, Marketing Director at Kevin Barry’s.

“I am proud to announce that the Shortlist of nominees is officially out for the Irish Pubs Global Awards in Dublin on Tuesday, September 27th!
Kevin Barry's Irish Pub was shortlisted, this year, in 4 different categories!
-The 2016 Irish Pub of the Year
-2016 Marketing Campaign of the Year
-2016 Authenticity Award
-Brian Tillman was nominated for Bartender of the Year 2016”

Keeping out fingers crossed for everyone and all involved!

So that’s about it for now. Try to stop by at Kevin Barry’s, 117 W. River Street, Savannah, GA 31401. 912-223-9626 this coming week (19-25 SEP). We’ll share a few songs and stories.

Visit my website, drop a note or Facebook commo if you feel like it.

All the best for now,

Frank Emerson
790 E. Spiller Street
Wytheville, VA 24382
276-613-0598 Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum

Update - August 2016 - August 10, 2016

Hello All Y’all –

Just trying to assimilate and be all inclusive in a folksy way. Of course that salutation would change when appearing up Nawth.

Trust everyone’s summer is nice and balmy.

I’ll be back at Kevin Barry’s, 117 W. River Street n Savannah, GA for the week of 15-21 August. As always, the shows start at 8:00 PM Monday - Saturday. On Sunday I’ll go on after the session. That usually turns out to be about 8:45-ish.

The session, which is anchored by the Savannah Ceilidh Group, is an open one, which means everyone is welcome to come and participate or just listen and have a nice cocktail and good grub. It generally gets going at about 6:30 PM and goes on for a couple of hours or so. What with it being the summer and holiday season, the session doesn’t always take place, so you might want to phone first. (912-233-9626). If the session doesn’t materialize, I’ll go on at 8:00.

Oh, announcing a new book: “Night Drive: Travels with My Brother” . This is by Garnet Rogers, brother and band-mate of the late and sorely missed Stan Rogers. To quote from the back cover it’s about:

…”nearly every stupid, inexplicable and bizarre thing that could happen to a pair of young idiots who were naive enough to think they could play folk music for a living back in the mid 70’s and early 80’s”

It’s 735 ( yes that’s right: 735) pages long and is available through Garnet’s website:

I’m about 260 pages into it as I write this (9 August) It’s rollicking and eye-opening and fun…oh and well-written too.

I guess that’s about it for now. I hope you can join me this coming week for a few songs and stories and laughs and songs and cocktails.

God bless,


June Update 2016 - June 8, 2016

Hello everyone –

I’m back for another “Beatles Week” at Kevin Barry’s next week. That is to say it’s an 8-dayer: 12-19 June (Sunday thru Sunday) . Vic says that this is so I get religion at both ends of the deal: protection fore and aft, if you will. On the Sunday’s I start after the open session, which runs from about 6:30 through 8:30, 8:45…something like that. It’s anchored as always by the extremely capable and musical Savannah Ceilidh Group. Everyone is welcome to come on, join in on instrument or voice, or just relax, have a good drink and/or chow and listen to some fine traditional songs and tunes. Monday – Saturday, I take the stage promptly at 8:00 and play 4 or 5 sets.

A premature happy Flag Day (Stars and Stripes, that is) on the 14th – which also happens to be the Army’s 241st birthday (American Army, that is) … so a premature Happy Birthday and a Hooah! to the U.S. Army). To continue with this raft of preemies, Happy Fathers Day on the 19th to all you fathers or as they say nowadays, ‘Babydaddy’ – see, that’s just to show you I’m hip.

That’s about it for now. I hope you get a chance to stop by and share a few songs and stories. I still have some openings for this year and I‘m starting to book for 2017.

Take care and God bless


May Update - May 6, 2016

Hello Everyone Out There –

I’m just gearing up to get back to Kevin Barry’s next week. Only this time it’s a little different. To steal from some old timer group called The Beatles, this time it will be “8 Days a Week”. I don’t know the song at all, but it fit nicely with this lead in. I’m at Kevin Barry’s Monday – Monday 9-16 May.

As usual, Monday – Saturday and then again on the next Monday, I’ll be starting at 8:00. On the Sunday, I’ll go on after the session winds up. The session usually runs from 6:30-ish to 8:30-ish, 8:45-ish. I’ll be going on 8:45-is, 9:00-ish. The session, as always, is an open one. This means that everyone is invited to come and join in with an instrument and/or voice or just sit back and enjoy some fine traditional (for the most part- they do mix it up some) Celtic music. The session, of course is more than ably and amiably anchored by the Savannah Ceilidh Band.

So here’s hoping I get to see you some time next week. Come on in, chow down – we’ll share a few drinks, songs and stories.

Not incidentally, this coming Sunday is the 71st anniversary of V-E Day. It’s also Mother’s Day this year. I wonder if there’s a connection. (Didn’t mean to be a wise guy, Ma) At any rate, a preemie wish for a very Happy Mother’s Day to all to whom it applies.

All the best for now,


For information, pictures, bookings and music samples, go to

April Update - April 7, 2016

Hello Everyone –

I hope you all (y’all) had an enjoyable and safe Saint Patrick’s Day and Easter and at least had a nod in honor and recognition of the Centenary of the 1916 Dublin Rising.

I had a great time with my pal, Jim Lloyd on 1 April playing at the benefit for the Department of Museums Programs at Heritage Center in Wytheville, VA. I’ve been blessed to have been able to work with

some phenomenally talented people through the years, of whom Jim is the latest. As they say in another former British colony, “The craic was 90!” I look forward to being able to do it again.

In the mean time, hope you’ll be able to join me this coming week at Kevin Barry’s in Savannah. Not so incidentally, Kevin Barry’s has again been ranked among the Top 10 Irish Pubs in the world on two additional Internet lists.

Since it was not ranked at #1 on either list, it would lead any sentient person to understand that “da fix wuz in”. But I’m not bellyaching. As a fella I know says, “It is what it is”.

Anyway, I’ll be on stage at Kevin Barry’s Monday – Sunday (11-17 April) Monday – Saturday, I start at 8 PM. On Sunday, I’ll start after the open session. The session runs roughly 6:30 – 8:30, 8:45 something like that.

Everyone is very welcome to attend the session, participate, play, sing or just sit back and enjoy over a pint of something or other. As always, the session is anchored with a welcoming spirit and no small amount of talent by the Savannah Ceilidh Band.

As if you’d have to be reminded, the Friday night is 15 April – Tax Day. This presents an excellent opportunity to celebrate or bemoan or meld the two – as an excuse to come in and have a drink or more supplied by the outstanding staff that are just salivating at the thought. You might even have a nosh. They’re pretty good here. Then we’ll sing and laugh and cry and all of that.

As your man said in what are now obviously better times, “I’m damned proud to be paying taxes in the United States. Thing is, I could be twice as proud for half the money”.

Hope to see you and take care for now,


1 January 2016 -Update - January 2, 2016

Hello Everyone –

First off, here’s wishing a very happy, prosperous and peaceful new year to all of you. This one is bound to be packed wit’ all sorts of shtuff!

Although the validity of the background of the content is bit fuzzy, I’ll quote Bobby Kennedy in a speech he delivered at Cape Town, South Africa on 6 June 1966. Fifty years after the event, I think it applies well. Take it as you will.

“There is a Chinese curse which says 'May he live in interesting times.' Like it or not we live in interesting times. They are times of danger and uncertainty; but they are also more open to the creative energy of men than any other time in history.”

Nuff said there. This year, I’ll be commencing to inflict my presence on innocent audiences this coming week, 4-10 January, at Kevin Barry’s Pub and Restaurant in Savannah. Monday thru Saturday, shows start at 8:00 PM. On Sunday, there is an open session from 6:30 until about 8:30, anchored by the Savannah Ceilidh Group. Everyone is invited to come one, come all and participate or just listen and enjoy some traditional Celtic tunes and songs. I’ll take the stage shortly after the session concludes.

For those of you who haven’t been to Kevin Barry’s, I should point out that the second floor contains not only a full service bar, but two extremely rare and fascinating museums/halls of honor. The first, The Hall of Heroes celebrates all members of the U.S. Armed Forces, Police, Fire and First Responders – including a special display for 9-11. The second museum covers the walls of Liberty Hall and commemorates honors and remembers the struggle for Irish independence through the years.

I guest that just about covers it for now. Information about me, free downloads of some of my music as well as ways to contact me in order to book me for any events – for which I have many convenient holes in my schedule - can be had at or at 276-228-6726 (276-613-0598).

Information about Kevin Barry’s can be had at or at 912-233-9626.

Take care for now and I hope to see you during the week


P.S. Both Kevin Barry’s and myself are on Facebook

December Update 2015 - December 2, 2015

Hello Everyone –

I’ll be performing at Kevin Barry’s in Savannah this coming week, 7-13 December, Monday - Sunday. On Monday – Saturday, the show starts at 8:00 PM. On Sunday, my twist starts at about 8:45 ish – after the open session, hosted by the Savannah Ceilidh Group, that runs from 6:30 until 8:30 or thereabouts. Everyone is invited to participate in the session with an instrument – including your voice – or just come on in and enjoy some traditional Celtic tunes and songs.

If you’ll note, opening night is the 74th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. We plan to recognize that event, which brought the United States into World War II, with some material from that era.

Regarding an earlier war, I’ll have copies of my book, Wythe Bane Graham (8th Virginia Cavalry): Letters and Narrative of a Son of the Old Dominion. It’s an enlightening monograph that comes from the perspective of an individual Virginian before, during and after the War Between the States. It might make a pretty good Christmas present and at $10 a pop, it won’t hurt you too much. Supplies are limited.

I’ve got to let you know about a special performance that will take place at Kevin Barry’s on Tuesday, 15 December. My friends Marci Shore, Carroll Brown and Harry O’Donoghue will be presenting the 2015 edition of their Celtic Christmas Concert. The whole thing kicks off at 7:00 PM. There is no cover charge and reservations are advised. For information, you might contact Tara Reese at Kevin Barry’s 912-233-9626

That’s about it for now. In case I don’t see you between now and then, I wish you all a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.


November Update 2015 - November 4, 2015

Hello Everyone –

This past weekend we had quite a time honoring and celebrating Kevin Barry’s Pub and Restaurant in Savannah on the occasion of the completion of 35 years of existence to this point. Vic Power founded the place on Halloween 1980 and hasn’t missed a step. Lots of old friends, to the point where it was impossible to spend much time with any one of them. Everyone was in the same boat. We also took the opportunity to remember Kevin Barry and observe the 95th year to the day of his execution, on 1 November. Musicians in attendance and performing included Seamus Kennedy, Pat Garvey, Carroll Brown, Brendan Nolan, J.J. Smith, Fran Doyle, Harry O’Donoghue, Kristina Train and myself. Unable to attend, but wishing like mad that they could have were Danny Doyle, Dennis O’Rourke, Gabriel Donohue and Joanie Madden, who sent letters and best wishes.

So I’ll be back at Kevin Barry’s this coming week – from the 8th – 14th of November. Brendan Nolan is there at the moment and Harry O’Donoghue will be following me starting on the 15th. On the Sunday’s there is an open session that runs from about 6:30-8:30. Everyone is invited to come, sing along, play along or just enjoy. I - or whoever has the stage on a particular week – goes on after the session: around 8:45, 9:00…something like that.

On Friday, 20 November, I’ll be performing at The Listening Room in Main Street , Wytheville, Virginia, which is where I live – so I can just stumble down the street and be on stage at 7:00 PM. The phone number there is 888-265-0324. The place only holds about 30 people, so everything is up close and personal.

That’s pretty much it for now. In advance: Happy 240th Birthday to the United States Marine Corps on 10 November and Happy Veterans Day on 11 November

October Update - October 15, 2015

Hello Everyone –

I had a great time performing at the Bland County, Virginia 6th Annual Festival of Leaves on 10 October. The weather was sort of Irish, but the fairgrounds sport a very nice covered pavilion so that performers and the audience alike were protected from the elements. There were plenty of fine performers and lots and lots of home-grown, cooked and crafted products. All in all, the 2-day affair was a genuinely good, family-oriented production and I appreciated the opportunity to participate and hope to appear there again.

To the business at hand I’ll be performing at Kevin Barry’s in Savannah 19-25 October. Monday –Saturday, I start at 8:00. On Sunday, there is an open session from about 6:30 – 8:30-ish. Anchored by the Savannah Ceilidh Band, everyone is welcome to bring an instrument (including voice) and join in on the largely traditional tunes and songs. I go on after they finish off.

I’m still editing Frank Tells Tales and hope to put the finishing touches on it before too much longer. I’ll let you know. In the mean time, I’ll have with me at Kevin Barry’s copies of another book I wrote that covers ante bellum, Civil War and post bellum era. It’s called Wythe Bane Graham – 8th Virginia Cavalry, C.S.A: Letters and Narrative of a Son of the Old Dominion. They’re priced at $10 each and I’ll be glad to sign my name - or anybody else’s name, for that matter – to a copy for you.

That’s about it for now. I hope to see you. Got a few new tunes and stuff that you might get a kick out of

All the best,

Frank (

Septemeber Update -at last - September 9, 2015

It’s been a little while since I’ve posted an announcement such as this. By choice, I’ve been below the radar for a few months. What happened was I had a little bit of a set-to with my left knee. To make a long, boring story shorter and maybe less boring, the Lords of Cartilage, Bones and Giant Cell Tumors apparently learned that I lean toward the right more than somewhat and that I needed some come-uppance. Consequently, I’ve been idle since Memorial Day.

Now, thanks to God and the medicos Emory, Ferguson and Savage at Wake Forest, I’m back into what passes for the fray. So they’re the ones to blame - not me: I was just the frog on the table.

Anywaaaays…thanks to Kevin Barry’s for their patience, I’m there 14-20 September. As it says in the downloadable and printable (though why anyone would want to do that is beyond me) image, Monday thru Saturday, I start at 2000 hours. Sunday I start whenever the session finishes. The session is open, which means everyone is encouraged bring an instrument, including voice and sit in with the anchor musicians, the Savannah Ceilidh Group. They start in at about 1830 hours and I get going when they call it quits – usually around 2045 hours.

So here we go again. Just to toss it out there, I am booking for 2016. Kevin Barry’s has been kind enough to stick with me for another go round, but I have plenty of open dates. Just as a reminder, your can get a lot of the skinny about me and hear a lot of my stuff at
Oh not for nothing, but I’ve got another book coming out pretty soon. Last year or so I published Wythe Bane Graham- 8th Virginia Cavalry, CSA – Letters and Narrative of a Son of the Old Dominion – obviously letters and explanations about the American Civil War, reflecting the point of view of a participant in the war from ante through post bellum.

The new one gets back to the more serious business of professional entertainment - a collection of my stories from Clean Cabbage in the Bucket and Other Tales From the Irish Music Trenches. What I’ve done is resection my stories from the anthology, re-edit and re-work them a bit and add a good amount explanatory narrative to come out with a book that’s more personal. It’s called Frank Tells Tales: Recollections, Explanations and Narratives from Years Spent Inflicting His Presence on Innocent, Unsuspecting Audiences. I’m hoping to have it out soon…a few more rigmaroles to go through. You’ll be able to get one for $10 – same price as the Wythe Graham book - I’ll have some where I play and of course I’ll have a few at home.

I guess that’s about it. Here’s hoping for everything good to come your way.

God bless our troops


May Update - May 8, 2015

Hello everyone –

I hope all of you made it through tax season with as little bruising and bleeding as possible. As your man said, “I’m proud to be paying taxes in the United States, but you know: I could be twice as proud for half the taxes.” It’s a nice thought, but probably won’t come to pass in our life times. Enough of this frivolity – on to the business at hand.

As you can see from the poster, I’ll be appearing at Kevin Barry’s in Savannah 11-17 May ( as I write this, it’s the week to come – It’s the day after Mothers’ Day, so let me wish all to whom it applies, a very Happy Mothers’ Day) Shows start at 8:00 Monday – Saturday and on Sundays I start after the open session. The open session starts at about 6:30. It’s anchored by the Savannah Ceilidh Group and friends and everyone is invited to bring an instrument and play or sing along or just experience an Irish/Celtic tradition, with mostly traditional Celtic music. After that finishes up, I go on. Usually that’s around 8:45-ish (I suppose that’s vague enough). I then play ‘til who laid the rails – which is at the latest about 1:00 AM, but usually a little earlier.

So I hope you can make it in some time this week. Saturday the 16th is Armed Forces Day. Of course we’ll be having a few songs for those who stand in harm’s way. To amend George Orwell:

We sleep safe in our beds because rough men and women stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.

God bless all and see you down the road.


April Update - April 9, 2015

Hello, Howzitgoin?

I trust everyone has taken one cure-all or another to recuperate fully from all the Paddy's week (weak?) gals, celebrations, remembrances and religious rites. Ready to start if all again? Yeah, me too!. In fact, I've an idea: we can get a good kick off to the preparations for 2016 this coming 13-19 April.

I'll be performing at Kevin Barry's in Savannah all week. Monday - Saturday, I'll be on stage starting at 8:00 PM On Sunday, I'll follow the open session. The session runs roughly 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM and is anchored by the Savannah Ceilidh Group. Everyone is welcome to bring an instrument - including voice - and participate, or just sit back with some fine food and drink and enjoy some good traditional Celtic, jigs, reels, hornpipes, waltzes, airs and songs. I begin my twist of ballads, toasts and fancy patter at about 8:45-ish PM.

Here's hoping you can make it in during the week. Drop a note or something some time if you feel like it.

Take care,


PS - Join me in keeping a prayer and thought for good luck to Craig and Steve Murphy who are hiking the entire Appalachian Trail to benefit the 1st Ranger Battalion Sua Sponte Foundation

January Update - January 3, 2015

Hello Everyone:
Here’s hoping all had a very Merry Christmas and that you will at least have have a shot at what – with luck and no small amount of perseverance and divine guidance – might become a happy and rewarding 2015.
I just can’t quite accept that 2015 is actually a year: I keep thinking a quarter past eight in the evening.
At any rate, please God and the creek don’t rise, I’ll be flailing and warbling away at Kevin Barry’s in Savannah from Monday, 5 January through Sunday , 11 January.
Monday – Friday, I start at 8 PM (2000)On Sunday, the pub hosts a traditional music session, anchored by the Savannah Ceilidh Group and Seldom Sober. The session is open, so all are welcome to bring an instrument, join in, sing along or just enjoy the craic. Starting at about 6:30 (1830), the session goes on for a couple of hours and I take the stage at about a quarter ‘til 9 (2045).

I hope you can find your way to 117 W. River Street sometime over the next week. There’s some terrific grub, well-poured drinks and all-around good fellowship. Don’t forget to pay a visit to Heroes Hall on the second floor. It’s a veritable museum honoring past and present service members, police, fire and first responders.

Back on the first floor music listening room, we’ll have a few songs, stories, laughs, maybe some cries and even a couple of toasts. All the best until then.

December Update - November 28, 2014

Hello All

I hope everyone had a peaceful, joyful, filling Thanksgiving with family, friends and loved ones – not necessarily mutually exclusive. I guess it’s time to rev up for Christmas and New Years celebrations. If you’d like to treat yourselves to something special this year, try to attend one of the series of Celtic Christmas Concerts presented and performed by my friends Carroll Brown, Harry O’Donoghue and Michael Murray. In the traditional spirit of Christmas, the shows are calculated to roast your chestnuts and warm your cockles. You can access the tour schedule at any of the fellows’ websites.

In the mean time, I’ll be appearing this coming week (1-7 December) at Kevin Barry’s in Savannah. Monday – Saturday, I’m on stage at 8:00 PM. On Sunday, there is a traditional open session – anchored by the Savannah Ceilidh Group – starting at about 6:30 PM. All are invited to sing, play an instrument or just listen. I take the stage afterwards – usually around 8:45 or so and continue through the night. I must make note of the fact that Sunday, December 7th is the 73rd anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. We always observe such occasions at Kevin Barry’s.

Take care for now and I hope to see you sometime next week. We’ll have a few songs, a few stories, a few laughs – maybe a few tears – and a couple of drinks.

God bless,


November Update - November 3, 2014

Hello Everyone!

I hope you all had a pleasant and fun Halloween and that none of you got scared to the point where your hair turned white and then fell out – like mine did when I thought I got a bad clam some years ago up in Cape Cod. At least that’s my story for right now...I have others. Anyway, I’m glad to be performing again at Kevin Barry’s ( next week. I’ll be opening on Monday, 10 November and playing through Sunday, 16 November. Shows kick off at 8:00 PM Monday – Saturday. On Sunday, the Savannah Ceilidh Group, which is anchored by the duo Seldom Sober. It’s an open session and everyone is invited to come and play along, sing along or simply enjoy some fine traditional Celtic music. The session starts at 6:30 PM. I take the stage after it wraps up – usually around 8:45-ish PM.

As you’re probably aware, Monday, the 10th, is the 239th anniversary of the establishment of the U.S. Marine Corps and the 11th is Veterans Day. I‘m pretty safe in saying we’ll be observing and celebrating both. I hope you can join us. Also Savannah has an excellent Veterans Day Parade. You can find information about the parade (time and route) at the following:

I’d like to remind you that you can listen to or download a lot of my music at my website: Have a visit and if you’d care to, please say hello in the guest book. Speaking of book – I’m always open for bookings. Give a call or drop me an email at

On a sad note, my friend and fellow musician Danny Quinn passed away last week. Please join me in sending condolences, sympathy and thoughts and prayers to and for Danny and his family. He was a fine musician and a gentle man, who brought a lot of people joy and comfort.

That’s about it for now. Take care until next time.

God bless,


Late September Update - September 25, 2014

Hello everyone! I just finished my first time performing at The Irish Pub on Washington Street in beautiful, downtown Lewisburg, West Virginia. Had a great time with Andrea, Patrick, the staff and customers. I look forward to getting back there again sometime down the road. (Program note: Be on the lookout for Chris Brewster produced/directed ginseng stories on Appalachian Outlaws on The History Channel).

This week, I’m lucky enough to - and looking forward to - return to the best listening venue in the country: Kevin Barry’s Pub in Savannah, Georgia. (29 September -5 October – also celebrating the 30th anniversary of the activation of the 75th Ranger Regiment on 3 October). Consistently named one of the top Irish pubs in the world, Kevin Barry’s Pub even far outdistances any Irish pub in the Levant! It is also one of the most Military-Friendly bars in that self same world-wide arena.

Shows start at 8:00PM Monday – Saturday. On Sunday, there is an open session that’s anchored by Seldom Sober and the Savannah Ceilidh Group. The session starts at about 6:30 PM-ish. Everyone is invited to play, sing or just listen. They wrap things up around 8:30 or 8:45. Then I go on. I hope you can make it!

You can hear or download a lot of my music for free at my website and I can also be accessed via Facebook.

August Update - August 13, 2014

In Savannah for a week at Kevin Barry's (11-17) . Looking forward to it, Shows are at 8:00 PM except for Sunday. Starting at about 6:30, the Savannah Ceilidh Band - anchored by Seldom Sober - hosts an open seisun (session), during which everyone is invited to participate. Sing, play an instrument, or just listen. They're also glad to talk with you about the music. It's entertaining and an education. I go on after they finish which is between 8:30 and 9:00 - and continue til the end of the night. Here’s hoping you can make it by for a few songs, laughs and drinks.

In addition, a happy 40th anniversary to the 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, U.S. Army, which was re- organized and activated on 1 July 1974 under (then) LTC Kenneth C, Leuer. Jumping into Ft. Stewart, 1/75 later relocated to Hunter Army Airfield, where they are based today, in Savannah, GA. Co A 1st Ranger Battalion was constituted in May, 1942 commanded by (then) CPT William O. Darby, and activated in June in Carrickfergus, Northern Ireland.

Also congratulations and OO-RAH to the United States Marine Corps for designating all units in the Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command (MARSOC) as Marine Raider units. The Raider name is the legacy of the 1st and 2nd Raider Battalions established in Spring of 1942 under (then) LtCol Merrit Edson and (then) Maj Evans Carlson.

May Update - May 17, 2014

Hope everyone is having a decent Spring – gardens in, lawns being mowed, dogs and cats washed and dried. I’ll be appearing at Kevin Barry’s in Savannah. The management posted the following piece on Facebook and I figured it would be a good idea to pass it along:

In reference to the incident on River Street and the Facebook post made by Jim Thomas of Atlanta over Mother’s Day weekend; Kevin Barry's Irish Pub would like to reassure any regular patrons and visiting guests we are doing our part to ensure your safety on River Street. If you or your loved ones feel threatened please let one of our staff members know and we will contact the proper authorities. Also if you feel uncomfortable walking to your vehicle or next destination please let our staff know so we can call you a taxi.

Kevin Barry's Irish Pub would like to extend our gratitude to our local police department for their presence and hard work to keep locals and visitors safe.

That said, my opening night is Monday, the 19th. Closing night is Sunday, the 25th – which is Memorial Day Eve, so I’m hoping for a good night. I hope you can join us as we remember those who paid the ultimate price for freedom and celebrate the way I’m sure they all wish they could.

By the way, today - 17 May - is Armed Forces Day. Please remember that freedom comes at a dear price.

New Book - February 22, 2014

New Book

What might be of interest to those of you concerned with the War Between the States, is the fact that I’ve just had a book published dealing with the experiences of one soldier from Wythe County, Virginia. It’s titled, Wythe Bane Graham, 8th Virginia Cavalry, C.S.A.: Letters and Narrative of a Son of the Old Dominion. At just under 60 pages, it’s a compendium of letters written to, from and about the man in question from when he was a school boy in ante bellum days up to and through his death, in 1912. In addition to the letters, I’ve written a narrative that can help explain some of the references made in the letters and place them in historical context.

Here’s an excerpt from the Introduction:

The American Civil War was a huge operation. Until 1863, the purchase of substitutes to take one’s place in conscription into the armed forces was practiced by both sides. At that point, the Confederacy abandoned the practice. They needed everyone. The involvement of the South was pretty much total.

Today, every family native to Virginia has a direct connection to the War Between the States. The “Mother of Presidents” was the prime battleground for the war. The number of confrontations that took place in Virginia far exceeds that of any other state. In Civil War Virginia: Battleground for a Nation, James I. Robertson, Alumni Distinguished Professor Emeritus at Virginia Tech, states that over a half-million men were killed, wounded or captured in Virginia during the four-year conflict. Confederate losses were nearly three times those of the Union. Again according to Professor Robertson, in today’s numbers, the depletion of the total population would be upwards of fifteen million

Though no longer in the first person, memories of the war are very much alive in the Old Dominion State. Photographs, papers and artifacts are kept as treasures in museums and individual family archives. Stories too are passed down through the generations by way of oral histories. While fascinating and revealing, oral histories can be of questionable historic accuracy.

A more reliable source of information might be the letters exchanged between soldiers and their families. Instead of a grand, panoramic history, these provide personal glimpses of individuals directly involved with events and their feelings about them, as they transpired.

Through the efforts and courtesy of the Watson/Graham family of Wythe County, Virginia, and Mrs. Kathleen Kelly Coxe Koomen of Roanoke, Virginia, the Wytheville Department of Museums and the Wythe County Historical Society came into possession of the extant letters to, from and concerning Wythe Bane Graham. Mr. Graham was a citizen of Wythe County, Virginia, who enlisted in the Confederate States Army in 1861 and served throughout the war. I was able to access these documents through the courtesy and with the permission of the Wythe County Historical Society.

Many details of the life of Wythe Graham were extracted from a biographical sketch, which ran in Confederate Veteran, Volume XX, October, 1912. It was written by Judge Joseph L. Kelly of Bristol, Virginia, former Chief Justice of the Virginia Supreme Court.

In addition to the letters, which date from pre-war into the twentieth century, I’ve provided a narrative that might explain some of the references made in the letters and place them in the context of the times.

The book is available by mail for $12.50, which includes postage and handling.

Frank Emerson
790 E. Spiller Street
Wytheville, Virginia 24382

It’s also available at the Wytheville Department of Museums Gift Shop, which is located in the Wytheville Regional Visitor’s Center, 975 Tazewell Street, Wytheville, Virginia.

In addition, I’ll have copies with me at my gigs.

About Pete Seeger - January 30, 2014

With political leanings put aside, this bit by Arlo Guthrie about Pete Seeger is a wonderful tribute and a beautiful piece of writing. Thank you Carroll Brown for sending it along.
Pete Seeger:

I usually do a little meditation and prayer every night before I go to sleep - Just part of the routine. Last night, I decided to go visit Pete Seeger for a while, just to spend a little time together, it was around 9 PM. So I was sitting in my home in Florida, having a lovely chat with Pete, who was in a hospital in New York City. That's the great thing about thoughts and prayers- You can go or be anywhere.

I simply wanted him to know that I loved him dearly, like a father in some ways, a mentor in others and just as a dear friend a lot of the time. I'd grown up that way - loving the Seegers - Pete & Toshi and all their family.

I let him know I was having trouble writing his obituary (as I'd been asked) but it seemed just so silly and I couldn't think of anything that didn't sound trite or plain stupid. "They'll say something appropriate in the news," we agreed. We laughed, we talked, and I took my leave about 9:30 last night.

"Arlo" he said, sounding just like the man I've known all of my life, "I guess I'll see ya later." I've always loved the rising and falling inflections in his voice. "Pete," I said. "I guess we will."

I turned off the light and closed my eyes and fell asleep until very early this morning, about 3 AM when the texts and phone calls started coming in from friends telling me Pete had passed away.

"Well, of course he passed away!" I'm telling everyone this morning. "But that doesn't mean he's gone."

February Update - January 30, 2014

I'll be at Kevin Barry's 3-9 February see
Feb update

Hello all – Just a couple of announcements:

1. If you’ve seen the movie “Lone Survivor” you might be interested in this book: “Lest We Forget: an Army Ranger Medic’s Story”, which gives you ‘the rest of the story’. As my friend, Ranger Brendan Durkan put it:

“Lone Survivor. Operation Redwings.

Most of you have seen the movie, read the book, know the story.

Something that isn't often talked about in the media is the story of the Rangers that were on the extraction/recovery mission for the fallen SEALs and the Lone Survivor Marcus Lutrell.

The people you see in the first picture are the Rangers that walked for 46 hrs, ran out of water, and then started hydrating with IVs until they completed their mission true to our creed, "I will never leave a fallen comrade behind".

On the second picture they are only 200 meters from the ridge where they recovered the body of Navy SEAL Matt Axelson. You can see how steep and fucked up the terrain was.

One of those Rangers, Leo "Doc" Jenkins wrote a book about his experiences on that mission containing never before seen or published pictures and I highly recommend reading it.

He didn't ask for a promo, but after picking it up, I can say it's a book worth of your time.

Check the book on Amazon here :
"Without them there would be no Lone Survivor book OR movie for Marky Mark to star in."

2. The 7th Beaufort Celtic Festival is being held on 22 February in Beaufort, SC. Performers include, Carroll Brown, Harry O’Donoghue, The Carroll Brown Celtic Band, The Raparees, The Savannah Ceilidh Band and Celtic Traditions. It should be quite a time. You can find all sorts of information at
I guess that’s about it. I’ll post information about St. Patrick’s Day early next month. In the mean time I hope you can come by Kevin Barry’s this coming week.

God bless all of yez and take care for now
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