Tommy Keane was born in Waterford city and after playing tin whistle for a couple of years, he met local piper Tommy Kearney who encouraged him to take up the uilleann pipes. As well as his early tuition from Tommy Kearney, Tommy also attended the Willie Clancy Summer School where he learned further piping skills. The recordings of Willie Clancy, Séamus Ennis and Tommy Reck have also influenced his repertoire and style of playing. In the 1980s Tommy spent seven years in London where he played with many of the giants of Irish music including Tommy McCarthy, Bobby Casey and Roger Sherlock. Since 1987 he has lived in Co. Galway where he teaches traditional music. His solo album “The Piper’s Apron “ was released in 1991 and in 1995 a duet album “The wind among the reeds” with his wife, concertina player Jacqueline McCarthy. He is featured with Liam O’Flynn and Ronan Browne on Volume 1 of Na Píobairí Uilleann’s DVD series “Piper’s Choice” - released in in 2008. He is Chairman of Na Píobairí Uilleann.
Jacqueline was born in London of Irish parents who had emigrated to England in the early 1950s. She grew up to traditional music, her father Tommy McCarthy being a piper and concertina player from Kilmihil, Co. Clare. She played with all the legendary players from Ireland who were living in London. Musicians like Máirtín Byrnes, Raymond Roland, Roger Sherlock, Danny Meehan, Paddy Taylor and Bobby Casey were all part of a thriving music scene that Jacqueline experienced first hand. She also recalls meeting John Kelly and Willie Clancy during frequent visits to Ireland.
With her father Tommy, sisters Marion and Bernadette and brother Tommy, Jacqueline performed throughout Ireland and the UK - including The Royal Albert Hall, London. She was a member of The Sergeant Early Band who performed traditional music for a contemporary ballet production Sergeant Early"s Dream by the London-based Rambert Dance Company. This association goes back to 1985 and has taken her to Poland, Egypt, Greece, Jordan, Zambia, and all over the U.K.. Since 1987 she has been living in Co. Galway where she teaches concertina. She is a regular performer at the Willie Clancy Summer School in Co. Clare and has toured the U.S. on several occasions with her husbandTommy Keane. In 1995 they released an album "The Wind Among the Reeds". She is a member of Maigh Seola a group who specialise in songs collected in North County Galway at the beginning of the 20th century. In 1999 she released "The Hidden Note" featuring the McCarthy family, Tommy Keane and Alec Finn.
The signature characteristic of “Tunes in the Church” concerts is an acoustic, authentic, personal and interactive representation of Irish music, song and dance. Interactive involvement between the audience and the performers is central to the experience. Relaxed, natural, conversational communication during the concerts lowers the typical barrier between the ‘audience’ and ‘performer’, thereby making each concert unique, fresh, and singularly authentic. Further, by challenging the concept that the home of Irish music is a pub setting, this concert series provides an exceptionally respectful but family friendly setting for the listener and creates a platform upon which leading exponents of traditional music can showcase their fine talents.