Ulster Folk Song > Articles by: Jane Cassidy

The Ballad of Patrick MacGill Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival Wed 8th May 2019

Maurice and Jane are delighted to be presenting their new show ‘The Ballad of Patrick MacGill’, together with Scottish singer Derek Williamson, at the 20th Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival. They’ll be telling the story of the Donegal Navvy Poet through extracts from his writing and local folk-songs. The performance will be in the Sunflower Bar, Union St, Belfast on Wed 8th May 8pm tickets £10 can be booked via

Sell-Out Concert ‘Remembering Neil Johnston’ at The Duncairn Centre for Culture & Arts 9th Feb 2019

12 musicians took to the stage of The Duncairn on Sat evening in a concert organised by Maurice and Jane to remember their great friend, folk-columnist Neil Johnston. Performing to a packed house, Sean Donnelly opened the night with a beautiful set of songs followed by Jane and Maurice accompanied by their daughter Anna Leyden and Jane’s brother Frank. Nollaig Casey also joined them for Jane’s song ‘Silverbridge’. Len Graham then finished the 1st half with a superb set. The second half of the night saw Neil’s guitar-hero and great friend, Arty McGlynn gracing the stage with his wife Nollaig Casey, delighting the audience with their virtuoso playing. And no better folk to round off a perfect evening of celebration and reminiscence than the wonderful Sands Family, casting their gentle spell over us all. A night to treasure. Throughout the evening, Maurice and Jane read extracts from Neil’s 860 folk-columns, making him very present. Maurice and Jane were delighted that Neil’s widow Myrtle, his daughter Catherine and 14 members of their extended family came along to celebrate with Neil’s many friends in folk-music.

Remembering Neil Johnston at The Duncairn Arts Centre, Belfast Sat 9th Feb 2019

For over forty years Neil Johnston was a reporter and feature writer for the Belfast Telegraph. In 1976 he reviewed Leo Rowsome’s LP Classics of Irish Piping and found himself “struck by the beauty and starkness of Irish music and song that was on my own doorstep.” The die was cast, and he began a music column in the Belfast Telegraph celebrating the local folk and traditional music scene, during some of the darkest years of the Troubles. At The Duncairn, Arty McGlynn and Nollaig Casey will headline this evening of music to remember Neil, alongside the Sands Family, Len Graham, Maurice Leyden, Sean Donnelly, and Jane and Frank Cassidy.