Martin Hayes is regarded as one of the most significant talents to emerge in the world of Irish traditional music.
His unique sound, his mastery of his chosen instrument - the violin - his acknowledgement of the past and his shaping of the future of the music, combine to create a formidable artistic intelligence. He has drawn inspiration from many musical genres, but remains grounded in the music he grew up with in East County Clare. He has a unique ability to place the tradition within a wider contemporary context, creating a unique and insightful interpretation of Irish music.
The Martin Hayes Quartet expands on many of the musical ideas pursued by Martin in his longstanding partnership with Dennis Cahill (guitar). The melody still remains central but now with an added range of sonic possibilities provided by the bass clarinet and viola d'amore. The addition of these instruments creates an added aural texture and amplifies the rhythmic possibilities while also allowing a larger role for improvisation. Both Doug Wieselman (bass clarinet) and Liz Knowles (viola/violin) bring a wealth of musical experience that contributes to the spacious, rich arrangements of the Quartet.