Meet the Band

The Sound of Celtic Routes

Picture yourself in a small in a town somewhere in Ireland, when a group of local musicians start playing and singing some traditional tunes in the corner. They’re sitting around a few tables, most likely with a few pints Guinness within reach. Or, maybe you’re strolling down the street in Glasgow or Inverness, or anywhere else in Scotland, and you’re drawn in by the sound of music and song emanating from a local pub. Or, perhaps, you’re somewhere in Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island or New Brunswick, and you’ve stumbled on to an east coast kitchen party, where local tunes are ringing out well into the evening.

If you envision yourself in one of these settings, you’ll be hearing and singing along or tapping your feet to the music that you’ll find at a Celtic Routes concert or pub night. Celtic Routes – we’re excited and proud to be sharing the music, songs and stories from Ireland, Scotland and Canada’s East Coast.

Celtic Routes History

Celtic Routes, a Lethbridge-based Celtic music group formed in 2017, when a group of local musicians who share their love and passion for Celtic music decided to band together. The members of Celtic Routes have all been playing music for numerous years, enjoying and performing various genres of music, ranging from dance hall, country, bluegrass, classical and Celtic.

Consisting of Anna Linville on fiddle and vocals, Darlene Waldie on accordion, Arturo Tejeda Torres on guitar, and John King on guitar and vocals, Celtic Routes have been impressing audiences with their own brand of Celtic music, including Irish, Scottish and Canadian East Coast music, songs and stories. They have performed at the Water Valley Celtic Music Festival, Lethbridge Folk Festival, New West Theatre’s Arts in the Park Summer Concert Series are regular performers at Lethbridge Folk Club events and can often be seen at various other venues in southern Alberta, including summer pop-up concerts. Their brand of high energy, hand-clapping, toe-tapping, and sometimes heart-tugging shows is their way of sharing the rich culture of Celtic music with the community!

In December 2018, Celtic Routes completed their first recording, called, “Sailing Home” which showcases their range of songs and stories, and is always available at their shows or through any member of the group.

If you like Irish, Scottish and Canadian East Coast music, or are just curious, you’ll never regret attending one – or many – of Celtic Routes’ performances!

Anna Linville

fiddle, vocals

Anna hails from the UK and has lived in England, Wales and Scotland and spent time in Ireland. Classically trained, the Scottish ceilidh scene turned her into a fiddler and she’s never looked back. Playing in Edinburgh ceilidh bands of all sizes ranging from 4 to 15 pieces, her first love is jigs and reels, as well as strathspeys and airs, but she also adds ethereal vocal harmony to the Celtic Routes sound.

Anna is definitely our own, “Scottish influence”, in our music selections and performances! With her enthusiasm towards Celtic music, she has greatly expanded our Scottish repertoire, as well as our Irish and East Coast selections.

Darlene Waldie

accordion

Darlene has always loved accordion music and was given a great chance to play old time dance music with Alvin and the Gafflebitters in Southern Alberta.  In Southeast Saskatchewan and Southwest Manitoba, she joined The Happy Wanderers playing for dances and in nursing homes.

Celtic Routes speaks to Darlene’s Irish ancestry and her coastal (BC) upbringing. She especially enjoys playing the poignant, historical and sea songs with Celtic Routes – not to mention the rollicking, toe tapping, hand clapping flights of fancy that oft burst out.

Arturo Tejeda Torres

guitar

Arturo just recently moved to Lethbridge from Queretaro, Mexico. Before moving to Canada, he played guitar in several bands in Mexico, and he taught guitar to younger students.

Being a musician and music lover, he decided to join the Lethbridge Folk Club shortly after arriving in Lethbridge. While attending Folk Club open stages and concerts, and listening to Celtic Routes, he developed a new music interest – Celtic music. He met with and jammed with a few members of Celtic Routes to gain a better understanding of Celtic music and the stories behind the songs. In no time, his interest in Celtic music kept growing and it wasn’t long before he became the newest member of Celtic Routes.

John King

guitar, vocals

Born the grandson of Irish immigrants and growing up in the Montreal and Ottawa Irish communities, Irish music and culture has always been part of John’s life. When he first picked up his guitar as a teenager, instead of playing rock and roll, he concentrated on songs from the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem, Irish folk singers, largely credited with bringing traditional Irish music and songs to North America in the 1960’s.

While living in Saskatoon several years later, John noted that there were no Irish music groups in town, so he formed the music group, “Tipperary” and joined the Saskatoon Association for the Promotion of Irish Culture, and the Saskatchewan Irish Club. Tipperary later became, “Tipperary Creek”, and for 15 years, the band performed all over Saskatchewan at festivals, pubs, conventions, private parties, etc.

In 2015, John made his first ever trip to Ireland, and the music, songs and stories that had somehow faded away while life happened, were reborn in him. Since then, John has regularly been performing Irish, Scottish and East Coast music in Lethbridge and the surrounding area. By 2017, he joined forces with other local musicians who share his love and passion for Celtic music, and Celtic Routes became a reality.

Former Members

Don Breuer

(retired)

Don started playing guitar when he was about 18, just playing three chord party tunes. That wasn’t very satisfying after a while, so he started looking for something else.

When he was about 40 he discovered the Dobro and fell in love. He became a reasonably good dobro player and formed “Country Grass”, a four-piece band which included his wife on the autoharp, son on bass, and a guitar picker. They played grass roots country/blue grass music all over southern Alberta.  After his son quit playing his bass, Don bought it and learned to play that instrument, joined a Pattern Dance band for a couple of years and became a bass player.

In 2004 he moved to Coaldale and formed “The Old Man River Boys”, a bluegrass band and played stand-up bass, singing bass harmony. During one of the jams, he attended in 2017, he met and played with a Celtic troubadour (John King) and realized he enjoyed playing that style of music. John liked singing with a bass behind him, so they decided to join forces, became a duo, and Celtic Routes became a reality.

Don still lives in Coaldale and enjoys jamming with friends playing bluegrass with his dobro and stand-up bass.

Don officially announced his retirement from Celtic Routes, in May 2022.

Photos

Sailing Home

Our first full-length album, featuring 15 Celtic favorites.
Purchase directly from Celtic Routes at one of our live shows.
Purchase from The Scottish Shoppe
106A 10 Street NW Calgary
1. Boys of Killybegs. (Tommy Makem).
“There are wild and rocky hills on the coast of Donegal”. For sure, the cliffs of Sliabh Liag (Slieve League) are some of the highest Atlantic cliffs in Ireland. This song is dedicated to the fishermen from the beautiful County Donegal fishing town of Killybegs who “fight to make their living from the sea”.
2. Sailing Home. (Dermot O'Brien).
This sailor’s wandering days are over, and he can’t wait to get back home to Dublin to the girl he loves.
3. Fields of Athenry. (Pete St. John).
The Famine was a terrible time in Ireland (1845 – 1849). Oftentimes, men who stole food just to keep their family going were imprisoned and sent away on prison ships to Botany Bay, a penal colony in Australia. This is a heart wrenching song about one of those families.
4. Ballad of St. Anne’s Reel. (David Mallett).
The welcoming spirit of Prince Edward Island is contagious and lives on well after we move on.
5. Nancy Spain. (Barney Rushe).
A sad story about a lonely guy who hopes against hope that his true love will return to him. This is probably one of Christy Moore’s most popular ballads.
6. Saltwater Joys. (Wayne Chaulk).
Often, songs from “Buddy Wasisname and the Other Fellers” (of which the songwriter, Wayne Chaulk, is a member) are funny and nonsensical, but they also write about life in Newfoundland and Labrador. This one talks about a local guy who decided to stay at home (along with his reasons why) rather than pursue his fortune elsewhere (maybe Fort McMurray?).
7. Working Man. (Rita MacNeil).
A beautiful tribute to the coal miners of Cape Breton that definitely resonates with us living in coal mining country of southern Alberta and south-eastern British Columbia.
8. Mairi’s Wedding. (traditional).
A Scottish song about a proud father celebrating his daughter’s wedding. We found the accompanying reel, called “Egan’s Reel”, and added it into our interpretation of this old tune.
9. If I Can’t Take the Island with Me. (Aaron C. Lewis).
Aaron Lewis, the songwriter of this song, is the son of one of the original members of the Carlton Show Band. He later toured with the band in the 1990s. He was recently inducted into the Nova Scotia Country Music Hall of Fame (2018). This song is about his love for Cape Breton Island and his “longing to return to the people so close to (his) heart”.
10. Will You Go, Lassie, Go. (traditional).
An old Scottish tune. It sounds like a love song, but we have to wonder about his commitment in the last verse, where he says, “If my true love she were gone, I would surely find another”!
11. Mermaid. (traditional).
The mermaid “told us of our doom”! We should have paid attention.
12. Grace. (Sean and Frank O'Meara).
Many songs have been written about the Easter Rising in 1916, during which the leaders who led the rebellion by proclaiming Irish independence in front of the General Post Office (GPO) were defeated and subsequently executed at Kilmainham Goal (Jail). One of them was Joseph Plunkett who was engaged to Grace Gifford at the time of the Rising. He and Grace were allowed to marry in the chapel of Kilmainham and spend about 15 minutes of private time together the night before his execution. A plaque commemorating their marriage is still on display in the chapel at Kilmainham. This poignant song tells a story of the conflicts between Joseph’s love for Grace and his love for Ireland.
13. Cliffs of Doneen. (Jack McAuliffe).
Apparently, the Cliffs of Doneen are fictitious, but are sometimes considered synonymous with the famous Cliffs of Moher (Aillte an Mhothair). Although the Cliffs of Doneen may not be real, the towns of Kilkee and Kilrush are actual towns in County Clare.
14. Maggie. (George Washington Johnson).
What a surprise! Although we thought this love song about growing old together was Irish, we discovered it was actually written by a Canadian from Toronto in 1864.
15. Wild Colonial Boy. (traditional).
A song about Jack Duggan, a fictitious Irish Robin Hood, who, “robbed the rich to help the poor” in Australia.

Videos

Irish

Carrickfergus | An Irish fellow who emigrated to America as a young man yearns to return to his hometown north of Belfast called Carrickfergus so he can die there.
Paddie Lie Back | An Irish sailing song, followed by 2 Irish jigs – Kesh Jig and Morrison’s Jig.
Home to Donegal | An Irish guy returns home to his birthplace in Donegal after leaving as a young man for work in London.
Irish Rover | A rollicking fun song about a doomed ship, The Irish Rover, which sailed from Cork, Ireland destined for New York in 1806. It had a strange crew and even more strange cargo on board. Unfortunately, it didn’t make it to its final destination!
Red is the Rose | An Irish love song with Scottish melody (Loch Lomond).

Scottish

Caledonia | This song is often considered the unofficial national anthem for Scotland.
Take Me Back | Bonny Scotland, I am coming home to you.
Far Side of the World | A Scottish love song about a fellow living far from home and longing for his Highland Girl.
Land Below the Waves | This Scottish song speaks to those who have left their homeland, but their roots and pride of their homeland lives on.

East Coast

Ballad of St. Anne’s Reel | A song celebrating the welcoming Islanders from Prince Edward Island and the spirit of Canada’s smallest province. If you’re familiar with St. Anne’s Reel itself, you’ll notice that Anna plays a different version of the famous fiddle tune after each verse.
Song for the Mira | A wonderful tune from Cape Breton Island, celebrating the people who live in Marion Bridge along the Mira River.
Heave Away | A totally fun, almost nonsensical singalong song from Newfoundland and Labrador.
Fella from Fortune | We like to call this one, “Celtic Fusion”, celebrating Ireland, Scotland and Canada’s East Coast. We start with, “Fella from Fortune” from Newfoundland & Labrador, then, “Frost is All Over”, from Ireland, then finish with, “Roarin’ Jelly” from Scotland.
Tales of the Phantom Ship | An apparition in the Northumberland Strait – a phantom ship engulfed in flames! Is it real or is it an illusion?!

Live Events

Upcoming Shows

Please note: All upcoming dates may be subject to health restrictions and/or cancellation due to Alberta Health Services regulations due to Covid-19.

January 2023
  • Monday, January 16, 1:15 – 2:45 PM – NordBridge Outreach, 1904 13th Avenue North, Lethbridge, AB (nordbridgeseniors.com)
  • Wednesday, January 18, 5:00 PM – The Zoo, Campus Pub, University of Lethbridge, Top Floor, Students Union Building, Lethbridge, AB
  • Thursday, January 19, 2:00 PM – Piyami Lodge, 301 Rogers Avenue, Picture Butte, AB
  • Thursday, January 19, 7:00 PM – Celtic Routes concert at Theoretically Brewing, 1263 2nd Avenue South, Lethbridge, AB (theorybrew.ca)
  • Friday, January 20, 2:30 PM – The View at Lethbridge, 110 Scenic Drive North, Lethbridge, AB
  • Friday, January 20, 6:30 – 10:30 PM – Southern Alberta Ethnic Association Scottish Celebration with Lethbridge Highland Dancers, 421 6th Avenue South, Lethbridge , AB
  • Thursday, January 26, 6:30 PM – Sunny South Lodge, 1120 20th Avenue, Coaldale, AB
March 2023
  • Friday, March 3, Noon – CKXU & ULSU Lunchbox Music Series, University of Lethbridge Students Union Food Court, Lethbridge, AB
  • Tuesday, March 14, 2:00 PM – Edith Cavell, 1255 5 Ave S, Lethbridge, AB
  • Wednesday, March 15, 2:00 PM – Seasons Lethbridge Gardens, 2641 Garry Drive West, Lethbridge, AB
  • Thursday, March 16, 2:00 PM – Piyami Lodge, 301 Rogers Avenue, Picture Butte, AB
  • Friday, March 17, 11:00 AM – Nord-Bridge Seniors Annual St. Patrick’s Day Celebration, Lethbridge, AB
  • Friday, March 17, 8:00 – 11:00 PM – St. Patricks’ Day Celebration, Twin Butte General Store and Restaurant, Twin Butte, AB (twinbuttestore.com)

Past Shows

December 2022
  • Thursday, December 1 – Celtic Seisiún (music jam), Theoretically Brewing Company, Lethbridge, AB (theorybrew.ca)
  • Saturday, December 3 – Celtic Christmas celebration, Taber Public Library, Taber, AB
  • Monday, December 5 – Martha’s House, Lethbridge, AB
  • Friday, December 9 – Piyami Lodge, Picture Butte, AB
  • Friday, December 9 – Lethbridge Folk Club Open Stage, McKillop United Church, Lethbridge, AB
  • Friday, December 16 – The View at Lethbridge, Lethbridge, AB
  • Friday, December 16 – Southern Alberta Ethnic Association Holiday Traditions Around the World Celebration, Lethbridge, AB
  • Thursday, December 29 – Celtic jam at Theoretically Brewing, Lethbridge, AB (theorybrew.ca)
November 2022
  • Thursday, November 3 – Celtic Seisiún (music jam), Theoretically Brewing Company, Lethbridge AB (theorybrew.ca)
  • Thursday, November 24 – Celtic Routes performance, Theoretically Brewing Company, Lethbridge, AB (theorybrew.ca)
October 2022
  • Monday, October 17 – Nord-Bridge Outreach concert, Nord-Bridge Seniors Centre, Lethbridge, AB
August 2022
  • Monday, August 1 – Heritage Day Celebrations, Southern Alberta Ethnic Association, Lethbridge, AB
  • Thursday, August 11 – Private Function
  • Friday, August 12 – Private Function
  • Saturday, August 13 – Private Function
July 2022
  • Saturday, July 9 – Arts in the Parks, Legacy Park, Lethbridge, AB
  • Friday, July 22 – GnY Chili Rib Festival, supporting Autism Lethbridge and Bridges of Hope, Monarch, AB
  • Saturday, July 23 – GnY Chili Rib Festival, supporting Autism Lethbridge and Bridges of Hope, Monarch, AB
June 2022
  • Saturday, June 4 – Theoretically Brewing Company, Lethbridge, AB (theorybrew.ca)
  • Monday, June 6 – Provincial Launch of Alberta Seniors Week, Taber Cornfest Stage, Confederation Park, Taber, AB
  • Wednesday, June 15 – Sunny South Lodge, Coaldale, AB
  • Thursday, June 16 – Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce, 2022 Chairs Reception and Volunteer Recognition, Norland Manor, Lethbridge (private function)
  • Saturday, June 18 – Water Valley Celtic Festival, Water Valley, AB
  • Wednesday, June 22 – Lighting Up Festival Square celebration, Lethbridge, AB
  • Thursday, June 23 – Piyami Lodge, Picture Butte, AB
  • Saturday, June 25 – Newfoundland Celebration at Yatin’s Gastropub, Medicine Hat, AB
  • Sunday, June 26 – ATB Financial Rotary Dragon Boat Festival, Henderson Park, Lethbridge, AB
May 2022
  • Friday, May 6 – Piyami Lodge, Picture Butte, AB
  • Friday, May 13 – CKXU Radio, 88.3 FM – live show plus band interview
April 2022
  • Saturday, April 23 – Twin Butte General Store, Twin Butte, AB
  • Thursday, April 28 – Sunny South Lodge, Coaldale, AB
March 2022
  • Friday, March 11 – Annual St. Patrick’s Celebration, Nord-Bridge Seniors Centre, Lethbridge, AB
  • Tuesday, March 15 – Legion Arms Centre, Lethbridge, AB
  • Wednesday, March 16 – Blue Sky Lodge, Lethbridge, AB
  • Thursday, March 17 – St. Patrick’s Day Celebration, Delta Hotel, Calgary South
  • Friday, March 18 – Private function
February 2022
  • Friday, February 18, 2:00 PM – Piyami Lodge, Picture Butte, AB
December 2021
  • December 7, 2:00 PM – Blue Sky Lodge, Lethbridge, AB
  • December 8, 7:30 PM – Martha’s House, Lethbridge, AB
  • December 14, 7:00 PM – Sunny South Lodge, Coaldale, AB
  • December 16, 2:00 PM – Piyami Lodge, Picture Butte, AB
October 2021
  • October 5 – Celebration for Alexander Keith’s Birthday. Lobster Supper and East Coast kitchen Party, at Honkers Pub and Eatery (https://honkerspub.com/)
September 2021
August 2021
  • August 14 – Lethbridge Folk Festival, Legacy Park, Lethbridge, AB sponsored by Lethbridge Folk Club (www.lethbridgefolkclub.com)
  • August 11 – East Coast Kitchen Party, Riverstone Neighbourhood, Lethbridge, AB
  • August 4 – Sunny South Lodge, Coaldale, AB
July 2021
  • July 26 – Private 65th birthday celebration, Champion, AB
  • July 24 – Neighbourhood Concert, Coulee Creek, Lethbridge, AB
  • July 6 – Neighbourhood Concert, Garden Grove Park, Coaldale, AB
March 2021
  • March 17 – Virtual St. Patrick’s Day Concert, “live”  via Zoom, sponsored by NordBridge Seniors Centre
  • March 17 – Virtual St. Patrick’s Day Concert
August 2020
  • August 20. East Coast Kitchen Party concert, Lethbridge
  • August 19. Outdoor patio, Sunny South Lodge, Coaldale
  • August 14. Lethbridge Folk Club outdoor open stage, Lethbridge
  • August 3. Southern Alberta Ethnic Association Virtual Heritage Day 2020 Celebration (video performance)
May 2020
  • Sunny South Lodge, Coaldale
March 2020
  • Annual St. Patrick’s Day Celebration, NordBridge Seniors Centre, Lethbridge, AB
  • NDP Lethbridge East St. Patrick’s Annual Ceilidh – NordBridge Seniors Centre, Lethbridge, AB
  • Bavaru Catering Sunday Brunch – Old Firehall, Lethbridge, AB
February 2020
  • Lethbridge Folk Club Howling Wolf Open Stage – CASA, Lethbridge, AB
January 2020
  • Robbie Burns Day – Sunny South Lodge, Coaldale, AB
  • Robbie Burns Day with the Scottish Country Dancers – Lethbridge Senior Citizens Organization, Lethbridge, AB
  • Robbie Burns Celebration – NordBridge Outreach, Lethbridge, AB
December 2019
  • Celtic Christmas – Sunny South Lodge, Coaldale, AB
  • Latin Christmas Market & Fiesta – Lethbridge Folk Club, Lethbridge, AB
  • Christmas Around the World – Southern Alberta Ethnic Association, Lethbridge, AB
October 2019
  • Lethbridge Folk Club 40th Anniversary – Casa, Lethbridge, AB
June 2019
  • Water Valley Celtic Festival – Water Valley Alberta, Cochrane, AB

Jams & Open Stages

Upcoming Jams & Open Stages

Celtic Routes proudly support and share our music at the following music jams and open stages.

January 2023
  • Wednesday, January 11, 7:00 PM – Open Stage – Petals, Paws and Beans, #20 – 24 Mount Burke Blvd W, Lethbridge, AB
  • Friday, January 13, 7:00 PM – Lethbridge Folk Club Open Stage, McKillop United Church Hall, 2329 15th Avenue South, Lethbridge, AB
  • Wednesday, January 25, 7:00 PM – Open Stage – Petals, Paws and Beans, #20 – 24 Mount Burke Blvd W, Lethbridge, AB
February 2023
  • Thursday, February 2, 7:00 PM – Celtic Music Jam – Theoretically Brewing, 1263 2nd Avenue South, Lethbridge, AB
  • Friday, February 10, 7:00 PM – Lethbridge Folk Club Open Stage, McKillop United Church Hall, 2329 15th Avenue South, Lethbridge, AB
March 2023
  • Thursday, March 2, 7:00 PM – Celtic Music Jam – Theoretically Brewing, 1263 2nd Avenue South, Lethbridge, AB
  • Friday, March 10, 7:00 PM – Lethbridge Folk Club Open Stage, McKillop United Church Hall, 2329 15th Avenue South, Lethbridge, AB

Contact Us & Booking Enquiries

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