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(Left to Right) David Mosher - Richard McMullan - Gary McMullen
Fred Klein - Dennis Green


Blackthorn welcomes you to the rich tapestry of Celtic music.

Traditional songs of emigration, sea shanties, lively jigs and reels, and ancient airs combine with some of Ireland’s best contemporary songs for a musical experience that captures the history and legend of Ireland and its people.

What makes a Blackthorn show unique is the variety of tunes, tempos and textures. Each member of the band plays multiple instruments, including wooden flute, accordion, tin whistle, five string banjo, cittern, bones and more. These instruments complement the lead vocal of Belfast native Richard McMullan and the band’s tight blend of four part harmony.

Blackthorn has played throughout the Great Lakes region since 1984. Based in Detroit, they can be found regularly at O’Mara’s Pub and Restaurant in Berkley. Other venues include concert halls, universities and festivals, including main stage appearances at the prestigious Michigan Irish Festival and world renowned Milwaukee Irish Fest.

Metro Detroiters fondly remember Blackthorn’s annual appearances on J. P. McCarthy’s St. Patrick’s Day show on WJR radio in the 1980s and 1990s, and later with Paul W. Smith. They have released seven CDs, and have performed with guest musicians such as members of the Michigan Opera Theater and the Motor City Brass Band. In 2010, Blackthorn was voted “Best Folk Band/Artist” by the readers of The Detroit Metro Times.

From large festival, to pub, restaurant or intimate performing arts center, Blackthorn provides time tested entertainment. Chuck Ward of the Milwaukee Irish Fest says this about the band, “Blackthorn was very well received at Milwaukee Irish Fest, they impressed everyone with their strong and well blended songs. They are strong ambassadors in their commitment to continuing the Irish ballad tradition and a crowd pleasing addition to any festival."

Blackthorn is an adjudicated performer of the Michigan Humanities Council and the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs.

Members of the Band

Richard McMullen

Richard McMullan:

Born and raised in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Richard brings to the stage the stories and songs of his native land. He sings lead vocal and plays guitar, mandolin, cittern, bodhran and bones.

Fred Klein

Fred Klein:

Fred brings a broad background to Blackthorn having played variations of rock and jazz throughout his musical career. He is firmly grounded in Celtic music and plays keyboards, tin whistle, wooden flute and accordion.

Gary McMullen

Gary McMullen:

The full spectrum of American and Celtic folk music, with special emphasis on Bluegrass music, best describes Gary’s background. He plays guitar and 5 string banjo for Blackthorn.

Dennis Green

Dennis Green:

Denny’s background includes choral and vocal group training as well as many years of performing in traditional and contemporary folk music ensembles. He plays bass guitar for Blackthorn.

David Mosher

David Mosher:

David has been a full time musician since 1988 and is well known throughout the Midwest in the folk, bluegrass and Celtic music scenes. He plays anything with strings on it, but primarily mandolin and fiddle with Blackthorn.

 

All members share in the vocals.

 

 

 

 

Take a Journey Through Time and Emotion


Celtic Knot