Concert Recaps Festivals Music

2018 Old Settler’s Music Festival: We Banjo 3 Brings Ireland to Texas

Ireland’s We Banjo 3 performed at Old Settler’s Music Festival on Friday, April 20. Featuring two sets of brothers, Enda Scahill (banjo, mandolin, tenor Guitar) & Fergal Scahill (fiddle, guitar, and bodhrán) and Martin Howley (banjo, mandolin, tenor guitar) & David Howley (banjo, vocals, guitar), these guys were easily my absolute favorite discovery at the festival.

Photo by Leigh Kettle

As some of you may know, we posted an article a week prior to the festival sharing our 5 Must-See Bands of Old Settler’s 2018. Upon posting the article on Twitter, I almost immediately received response by a fellow Old Settler’s lover, claiming that I’d have a new band in my “Top 5” post-festival, We Banjo 3. Unfamiliar with the band at the time, and as a person always curious for new music, I looked them up and instantaneously fell in love – anyone who completely NAILS a Nickel Creek cover is a friend of mine >> The Fox.

During the 50-minute drive to the festival on Friday, We Banjo 3 was ALL I listened to, and I even happened to catch a brief interview with the guys on Sun Radio. I imagined they were charming from the get-go, but man, were they even more so in the interview. They joked how they got sunburns within six minutes of being in Texas, while the host joked that it was one of the cloudiest weekends in Austin. It was in that interview that I learned of the genre Celtgrass and knew I had found a new favorite genre – being a gal of Irish decent, I’ve always found comfort in Celtic music, so to combine that with bluegrass (another favorite genre of mine)… OOF. So many feels – just take a listen for yourself.

I arrived to the festival just in time to catch their whole set and was BLOWN 👏 A 👏 WAY. Seriously guys. I know I might say that a lot (and I always mean it), but this was beyond what I imagined. Everyone in the crowd had the biggest smiles on their faces and I honestly don’t think I saw anyone standing still – it was pure joy in music form.


Their upbeat yet homey tunes were the absolute perfect soundtrack to kick off the weekend and left everyone in the perfect mood for the remainder of the evening. Between the energy they radiated, their phenomenal jams, and their adorable dynamic on stage, We Banjo 3 was hands-down a highlight of the weekend. I may even see a trip to Ireland in my near future now just so I can see these lads again!


For more coverage on Old Settler’s Music Festival and other music happenings around Austin, visit here. And be sure to stay tuned for additional recaps/photo galleries from the festival in days to come!

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