Center For Arts & Equity

David Howley

Born in Galway on the west coast of Ireland, David Howley started his musical life at a very early age. From the age of 12, David really began to hone his craft, gigging in the local bars in Clare and Galway and joining every session possible. Playing guitar, banjo and mandolin, David was quickly marked as a hugely talented singer and multi-instrumentalist being described as having “soul beyond his years”.

David is a multiple All Ireland Champion on guitar and banjo. He has toured Europe extensively with many Irish Dancing shows including “Celtic Legends” and “Irish Celtic.” David has also performed with the group Freewheel, along with Fergal Scahill and Sean McCarthy (FullSet).

Teaching has always been important to Howley, having nurtured both young guitarists and banjo players to competition standards. Completing all senior levels of the SCT exams held by Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann, David both explores the technical mastery of playing as well as the soul and life that music can have.

David is a founding member of We Banjo 3, described as “Ultra-talented Irish performers … freshness and finesse bordering on magical” (Wall Street Journal). In 2011, the band received the much coveted Music Network Young Musicwide Award. From this they went on to record their debut album “Roots of the Banjo Tree,” which received Irish Times Album of the Year as well as Album of the Year by and Irish American News. Headlining festivals across the US, the band has formed a reputation for its fun and virtuosity onstage. “They were absolutely the hottest show at this year’s Irish Fest in Milwaukee…the weekend featured the birth of a new force in Irish music,” said Bill Margeson of The band's second album “Gather the Good” followed suit claiming four Album of the Year awards from, Celtic Connections WSIU, Lonesome Highway RTE Radio 1 and Irish American News.

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