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Joanie Madden

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Cherish the Ladies [Mirella Murray, piano accordion ; Mary Coogan, guitar ; Joanie Madden, flute ; Kathleen Boyle, keyboards ; Gráinne Murphy, fiddle] / Unidentified photographer. New York, 2010s. Image courtesy Joanie Madden.

Cherish the Ladies

Some of the best young traditional musicians in New York in the 1980s were daughters of immigrants who had arrived in the early ‘60s, including many whose fathers were musicians themselves. In 1985, this phenomenon inspired musician and scholar Mick Moloney (based at that time in Philadelphia) to propose to Ethel Raim of the Ethnic Folk Arts Center (now the Center for Traditional Music and Dance) that a concert be staged to present the best of the young female Irish traditional musicians in New York. Moloney called the show “Cherish the Ladies” after an old Irish jig, and the concert was so successful that further “Cherish the Ladies” shows and a companion Shanachie LP followed, as well as a “Fathers and Daughters” concert and album featuring the ladies with their dads.

The most ebullient performer at the Cherish the Ladies concerts was Joanie Madden, daughter of the Galway accordion player and band leader Joe Madden. A superb flute player and an All-Ireland champion on the tin whistle, Joanie resisted her father’s warning that traditional music could only be a sideline to a “real job,” and turned Cherish the Ladies into a touring band that has continued to perform and record to this day.

Unidentified, waltz ; The orphan, jig / Joanie Madden, flute ; Joe Madden, accordion ; Felix Dolan, piano. Recorded by Terry Rafferty at the Eagle Tavern, New York, 10 April 1992

Annie's favourite, hornpipe ; Wade Hampton's, hornpipe / Joanie Madden ; Joe Madden ; Felix Dolan. Recorded by Terry Rafferty at the Eagle Tavern, New York 10 April 1992

Cherish the Ladies / Paul Kolnik
Cherish the Ladies / Paul Kolnik
Cherish the Ladies [Siobhán Egan, fiddle ; Joanie Madden, flute ; Bridget Fitzgerald ; Cathie Ryan, singer ; Maureen Kennelly, dancer ; Mary Coogan, guitar ; Eileen Golden, dancer ; Mairéad Powell, dancer ; Eileen Ivers, fiddle ; Maureen Doherty Macken, accordion] / Paul Kolnik. New York, 1980s - 1990s. Image courtesy Paul Kolnik.
 
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Cherish the Ladies / Paul Kolnik

Cherish the Ladies / Paul Kolnik

Cherish the Ladies / Paul Kolnik

© Ethnic Folk Arts Centre

Cherish the Ladies / Unidentified photographer
Cherish the Ladies / Unidentified photographer
Cherish the Ladies [Back row: Winifred Horan, fiddle ; Siobhán Egan, fiddle ; Eileen Ivers, fiddle ; Joanie Madden, flute ; Eileen Golden, dancer ; Mary Coogan, guitar ; unidentified. Front row: Linnane Wick, dancer ; Maureen Doherty Macken, accordion, flute ; Cathie Ryan, singer] / Unidentified photographer. , 1980s - 1990s. Image courtesy Joanie Madden.
 
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Cherish the Ladies / Unidentified photographer

Cherish the Ladies / Unidentified photographer

Cherish the Ladies / Unidentified photographer

© Publicity photograph