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.
Martin Hayes’ soulful interpretations of traditional Irish music are recognized the world over for their exquisite musicality and irresistible rhythm. He has toured and recorded with guitarist Dennis Cahill for over twenty years, and has collaborated with extraordinary musicians in the classical, folk and contemporary music worlds such as Bill Frisell, Ricky Skaggs, Jordi Savall, Brooklyn Rider and the Irish Chamber Orchestra, RTE Concert Orchestra as well as many of the greatest traditional Irish musicians over the past thirty years. Martin has contributed music, both original and traditional arrangements to modern dance, theatre, film and television. He has performed on stage with Sting and Paul Simon and recently recorded with Yo Yo Ma’s Silk Road Project. He is the artistic director of Masters of Tradition, an annual festival in Bantry, Co. Cork and a co- curator for the Marble Sessions at the Kilkenny Arts Festival.