The Doggy Few are mostly based in the north of Holland in the town of Groningen, where Drumcondra born and bred Peter Kelly owns a Traditional Irish Music Bar with a 'grand' music session every Sunday. It was from here that Luke first set out to play the lively Irish music, songs and ballads that he had learned whilst living on The Green Isle. As a band, Luke, Peter and their four Dutch musician friends they met in Irish session - Erik, Annelies, Ietsje and Nynke - have been going up and down the road for over 12 years now, playing jigs, reels, drinking songs and ballads. Whether it's a festival, pub, concert or anniversary, in your kitchen or at the main stage, with a few or all bandmembers, the Doggy Few are ready to go!
“The Angelus bells, oér the Liffey swells, rang out in the Foggy dew”, the last line from the first verse, taken out of one of the best known Irish ballads about the Easter rebellion in 1916. When the band needed a name, someone remembered the crowd once asking: "Doggy Few, sing us the Foggy Dew one more time?!?" So, that's why.
Lucas was already singing before he could walk. His sister started dating a banjo player, which made him fall in love with the Irish, Scottish and English ballads as a 12-year-old. In addition to the classics like Deroll Adams, Woody Guthrie and Bob Dylan, Lucas spent his youth listening to Clancy Brothers, Ian Campbell, etc. In the mid-1970s, he traveled through Europe and Asia and lived in Ireland, working the market stalls, roads, the desk and cleaning. During this time he also worked as a barkeeper in pubs and folk clubs, where he came in contact with The Bothy Band's music, Christy Moore, Planxty and The Pogues course. After a rowdy carier as a cook, he studied Spanish, Dutch and Communicational Science and worked as a writer, trainer and teacher. Thanks to this background, Lucas has no trouble finding topics and issues for the songs he writes for the band... :)
It was years later that he learned to make music with his guitar. Lucas is the frontman and songwriter of the band. In addition, he works with Ietsje as the dark-dark duo Calamity Jane: www.calamity-jane.nl. They bring happy, self-written and covered songs and (Irish) tunes about drink, murder, love and remedies.
His experiences as a busconductor on the 46A Dublin busses have greatly influenced his style of bodhran playing. He only stops to recite a poem or sing a mad song with his lovely deep Dublin voice.
Peter owns a Traditional Irish Music Bar in the Dutch city of Groningen, which organises grand music sessions. The Irish sessions in Irish Music Bar O'Ceallaigh have brought together many folk musicians over the years, and still are a birthplace for many new bands! Peter and Lucas started playing together years back, before other folk musicians came to these sessions and were asked to join their band. So actually, it was Peter's bar which 'raised' and brought together the musicians from the Doggy Few.
After many years of playing all sorts of European folk, Erik dedicated himself mostly to Irish music in 2003. He started as a session musician in Peters Irish O'Ceallaigh pub in Groningen, and has since been a member of several Irish folk formations in the north of the country, including The Doggy Few. By regularly visiting Ireland and taking lessons, Erik really got the Irish folk techniques into every finger. He writes tunes for the band and also lookes after the gear (music, lights) and recordings for The Doggy Few.
In addition to many gigs all over Europe, Erik also founded the website www.folkaccordeon.nl, which promotes Irish / Scottish folk on the piano accordion. For more information about Erik, such as sound clips, movies, free sheet music and classes, please visit his site.
As a child, Annelies started out with more than 10 years of sturdy Classical music classes. For a while she considered going to Music School, but it was Archaeology that eventually won her over. Shortly before going off to Groningen to study Archaeology, her parents booked an Irish band to their Anniversary, and Annelies was immediately sold. Her Irish journey started right there that night, when she was allowed to sing with the band and asked to record "Silent Night" for their upcoming Album.
In Groningen, she quickly found the irish Pub O'Cealllaighs, took up whistle, bodhrán and dancing classes and found herselfs enrolling deep into the Dutch world of folk. Her Classical background made sure she could pick up the folk techniques quickly, together with bandmember Erik! Many weekly Irish sessions followed and soon Irish folk bands, from Medieval to Trad. She currently is a bandmember in the Continental Ceili Band and Winterfolk, but The Dogs are her favorite band. Annelies also is one of the dancers at Keltisch Dansje and one of the ceili teachers with The Doggy Few. She organises Irish sessions with FolkSessies in het Oosten.
Ietsje grew up in a family where a lot of music was made. As a 6 year old girl she fell in love with the sound of the violin, when as a child she was taken to party's with folk music. She started with classical lessons, but the intereste in folk always remained.
After several classical orchestras and ensembles, she began her first folk band during her studies. When she returned to Groningen after a period abroad, she decided to go to the O'Ceallaigh Pub sessions to really learn the "Irish way of playing". It never took her long with the sturdy Classical background.
She now plays with bands like "the Reel Thing" and of course The Doggy Few. In addition, she works with Lucas as the dark dark duo Calamity Jane. They bring happy, self-written and covered songs and tunes about drink, murder, love and remedies...
Nynke rejoined the band a few months back. More info soon!