Avourneen to release first full-length album at Clocktower Cabaret
After six years of playing at pubs, dances and festivals across the Western U.S., one of Colorado’s most successful Celtic acts will release its first full-length album in March.
Avourneen (pronounced a-vore-neen), a Denver-based trio that specializes in Irish folk, will release “Sparrow,” a 15-track album that includes original songs, covers of traditional ballads and instrumentals on March 8. The band will formally debut the album during a special performance at Denver’s historic Clocktower Cabaret on the 16th Street Mall. The concert will feature Avourneen members past and present, as well as guest appearances from some of Colorado’s best-known Celtic musicians.
The album was recorded at Sawtelle Studios at Denver’s historic Swallow Hill folk music center in 2019, and features guitarist/vocalist Adam Goldstein, violinist CL Morden and bassist Kenny Martinez. What’s more, Aeryn Parker, who’s appeared with Avourneen regularly since the band formed in 2014, is featured on flute, tin whistle and bohdran on “Sparrow.” “Sparrow” follows the band’s first release, 2014’s EP “Beloved,” and includes the original compositions “Sparrow,” “Banks of the Liffey” and “Cork March,” as well as favorite traditional Irish standards such as “Rising of the Moon,” “The Mermaid,” “Wind That Shakes the Barley” and “The Silver Spear.”
“This album combines old and new. The record features some of the standards we’ve been playing since we first formed six years ago back-to-back with newer, original songs and more obscure songs we’ve only tackled recently,” Goldstein said. “The original compositions were inspired by directly by the time that C and I spent in Ireland in 2014.”
The release of “Sparrow” will kick off a busy year of performing for Avourneen, as they’re slated to appear at folk music festivals, Celtic showcases and contra dance gatherings across the West in 2020. The band’s schedule includes appearances at the Ceili at the Roundhouse festival in Evanston, Wyoming in March and stops at the Santa Fe Traditional Music Festival in August and the Boo Camp Contra Dance Festival in New Mexico in October.
For more than a decade, Goldstein has been a fixture at the Clocktower Cabaret, where he plays Irish folk songs for the club’s popular burlesque and variety shows. CL, a classically trained violinist who earned a bachelor’s from the prestigious Lamont School of Music at the University of Denver, has experience as a member of the Denver Philharmonic Orchestra and other orchestral ensembles. Kenny has vast experience playing pop, rock and jazz music in professional ensembles.
The band has garnered a loyal following over the past six years. During St. Patrick’s Day weekend within three months of their official launch, Avourneen shared the stage with Pinch of Snuff, a quintet straight out of County Leitrim. The band’s version of the Pogues’ classic “Fairytale of New York” even earned a shout-out from the Pogues themselves on Facebook. In 2014, Adam and CL embarked on a trip to Ireland to study the music at its source. They’ve been tabbed to play high-profile festivals for the past several years, including events in Colorado, Wyoming, New Mexico and beyond.
The trio also plays regular gigs at coffee shops, weddings, professional theaters, folk dances and private events.
Avourneen literally means “dear one” or “beloved” in Irish.