New England Celtic Arts will present the Irish American folk trio Makem & Spain at Phillips Area Community Center on Sunday, July 17; at One Longfellow Square in Portland on Tuesday, July 19; at Deertrees Theatre in Harrison on Wednesday, July 20; and at Route 27 Arts in Stratton on Thursday, July 21.

All performances begin at 7 p.m.

Not in the past 30 years has a group taken the international stage with such vocal power and stage presence, capturing the essence of its genre while standing out as truly unique. A host of various instruments and three male vocals, the group’s precise three-part harmonies blend perfectly for what many have described as a wall of sound. Makem & Spain’s talent and enthusiasm draw in fans who have never experienced the joy of folk music.

Rory Makem was born in Drogheda, County Louth, about an hour north of Dublin. He continues the lineage of one of Irish music’s dynasties, begun by his grandmother Sarah Makem, who was sought by song collectors for her store of traditional Irish songs. His father Tommy Makem was the modern day Bard of Armagh. Now considered an icon, he helped to bring Irish music out of the corner and into the international spotlight.

Mickey and Liam also learned Irish songs at their father’s knee. Mickey’s rich, baritone voice and Liam’s mastery of stringed instruments quickly found a home when Rory met the Spains and they realized the power of their combined talents. But folk songs are ingrained in both families and their songwriting contains the timeless qualities of folk classics, songs of the worker, songs of the sea and Irish culture. They tell the tale of Ireland and its people — a culture that has undergone terrible strife, but remains strong.

One Longfellow Square is located at 181 State St., Portland. Tickets are $20 and may be reserved by calling 207-761-1757 or by visiting

Phillips Area Community Center is located at 21 Depot St., Phillips. Tickets are $15 and may be reserved at 207-639-2630.

Deertrees Theatre is located at 156 Deertrees Road, Harrison. Tickets are $22 and may be reserved at 207-583-6747 or online at

Route 27 Arts is at 88 Main St., Stratton. Tickets are $15 and may be reserved by calling 207-562-4445 or online at

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