The Bedford County Chamber Foundation and Golden Eagle Inn in Bedford are welcoming the return of Peter Sheridan, who last performed in Bedford last summer as part of the band, Byrne and Kelly.
Sheridan will perform Wednesday, July 24, as part of his own band, Monaco and Alameda, for a dinner and concert in the Golden Eagle Inn dining room.
Sheridan plays keyboards, guitar and mandolin for Byrne and Kelly, also known for their work as headliners in the Celtic Thunder stage show.
“This event fits so much with our personality,” said Tom Salmon, Golden Eagle Inn owner.
“With the Irish theme to our pub, our new whiskey bar, and the bed and breakfast, which is so traditionally European … it seems like we’re coming full-circle.”
Sheridan’s band, Monaco and Alameda, is self-described as an “indie-folk band whose old-style Americana-Folk songs are filled with evocative harmonies and curious storytelling.” Sheridan said American folk not a far stretch from the music of Ireland, his homeland.
“My father played a lot of old Irish music, as well as country music, so I was exposed to it at a young age,” said Sheridan, during a telephone interview while on tour with Byrne and Kelly. “You know, when you think about folk music, the further you go back, really, the closer it gets to Ireland.”
Sheridan shares the stage with “Alameda,” his wife, Denver-native Erika Sheridan, whom he met while touring America as part of the Celtic Thunder band. The two began collaborating artistically, drawing from their varied musical and cultural backgrounds. The two have released two EPs, “Overtake, “featuring songs inspired strongly by family ties, road traffic and being too close or too far from home, and “Well and Alive.”
Sheridan describes the Monaco and Alameda show experience as similar musically to the likes of the Carter Family, John Prine and Blaze Foley, whose songs the band covers with a fresh take. But their EP’s feature original music as well, which they are excited to share with American audiences.
The husband-and-wife duo are embarking on a U.S. tour this month, with stops in cities such as New York, Kansas City, Charlotte, Chicago and Washington D.C., among others.
“We are thrilled to be included in the Monaco and Alameda Tour,” said Sarah Ferrari, Chamber program and events coordinator. “It was wonderful to get to know Peter during the Byrne and Kelly concert last year, and we are honored that he wanted to come back and share our community with his family band.”
The last few years have been busy for the instrumentalist, who has been part of two Byrne and Kelly Tours, as well as the 10th anniversary 75-city extended tour of Celtic Thunder. But this summer’s Monaco and Alameda shows will be a very different experience for both the performers and the audience.
“The Celtic Thunder show is very regimented, and Byrne and Kelly stick to a show format,” said Peter. “Our (Monaco and Alameda) shows are smaller, and not so many people know us, which can be really cool, getting to play for new people who maybe aren’t as familiar with our music.”
Their one night only performance at the Golden Eagle Inn in downtown Bedford will be an intimate affair, with only 55 seats available. The concert will take place in conjunction with an Irish-American fusion dinner, prepared by Chef Zach Ford.
The event is timed with a barrel release of a special batch of the Olde Bedford Brewing Company’s Keep Your Powder Dry Irish Stout, inspired by the Byrne and Kelly event last year. Limited edition bottles of the barrel release will be available at the brewery for $25 each. Guests of the dinner/concert may add-on the commemorative bottle to their ticket purchase.
Proceeds from this special event benefit the educational offerings of the 501-c3 Bedford County Chamber Foundation, which manages programs such as Youth Leadership Bedford County and Community Reading Day, as well as career fairs and field days for elementary, junior high and senior high students. More than 4,000 Bedford County students participated in the Chamber Foundation’s career exploration, workforce development, literacy and leadership programs during the 2018-19 school year.
“We are so glad to bring world-class entertainment to Bedford, not only from our great country but from across the pond,” said Dave Copley, chairman of the Chamber Foundation board of directors. “Ireland shares history and heritage with our county as well as our host venue.”
The evening is sponsored in part by local advocate of the arts, Lynn Ashe, who appreciates the cultural event featuring international flavors.
“Fine food and great music,” says Ashe, “nourishment for both body and mind.”
Tickets are $100 per person and may be purchased at the Chamber office while available, or online: BedfordCountyChamber.com. Sponsorships are available as well by calling 814-623-2233.