Niall adds another string to his bow

August 28, 2012

A Camlough musician has bridged a gap of fifty years to claim a second All Ireland Senior Fiddle title for the Orchard County at Fleadh Cheoil na hEireann.

Twenty one year old Niall Murphy, representing the Ring of Gullion Comhaltas branch, scooped the top prize at last weekend’s competition in Cavan, 50 years after Brendan McGlinchey from Armagh city achieved the same feat in 1962.

Having been runner up in the same contest five times previously – and for the last three years in a row – Niall is naturally delighted at finally claiming the elusive prize.

In the tightest of competitions and after a judges’ recall, Niall just pipped his nearest rival and good friend, Dylan Foley from New York.  Paying tribute to Dylan, whom he described as “a brilliant musician”, Niall said he is “really delighted” to have won.

“I’ve been competing in the All-Ireland Fleadh for about eleven years and came second in the senior fiddle competition five times before so it’s great to have finally won it,” a delighted Niall told The Examiner.

It is the latest in a long string of accolades accumulated by Niall over the last few years.  In October he scooped the Fiddler of Dooney title as part of the Sligo Live festival and earlier last year he created history when he became the first musician to win back-to-back junior and senior titles in the prestigious Fiddler of Oriel competition in Monaghan.

Niall’s impressive music career has taken him throughout Ireland and Europe in recent years and despite being just 21-years-old, he has already carved out a name for himself among some of the

greatest fiddle players in Ireland.

A member of the four-piece trad band ‘Reel It In’ – along with Eamon Rooney from Mayobridge and Coalisland duo Ciaran and Niall Hanna – the group completed a tour of France and Denmark earlier this year and is currently in the process of recording its debut CD, which is hoped will be completed before the end of the year.

Coming from a family steeped in music, Niall is one of five siblings who are all talented musicians and indeed his younger brother Cathal also tasted success at this year’s Fleadh Cheoil, taking third place in the Bodhran 12-15 competition.