Julee Glaub Weems, the Coordinator of Traditional Song Week, is a North Carolina native who studied literature and communications at Wake Forest University before following her longstanding interest in Irish culture to work with the poor in Dublin. For nearly seven years, she continued her work in Dublin while sitting at the feet of master players and singers, absorbing all she could. She credits the combination of material from older singers and from the Traditional Music Archive, and her experiences in working with poor and working people in Dublin as the major inspirations for her ballad singing. Upon returning home, she became involved in the Irish music scene here in the states and has become recognized as a leading interpreter of Irish songs in America. She lived in the northeast for seven years in order to be closer to the heartbeat of Irish music in America in the major Irish-American enclaves in Boston and New York, and performed with the band Séad (Brian Conway, Brendan Dolan, and Jerry O’Sullivan) with whom she still performs from time to time, as well as Dáithí Sproule, Pete Sutherland, and Tony Ellis. Her last solo release, Blue Waltz, explores her interest in the connections between Irish and Appalachian song and has been featured on NPR’s Thistle and Shamrock and is a part of Doug Orr’s and Fiona Ritchie’s NY Times bestseller, Wayfaring Strangers. Now based in Durham, NC, she and her husband, Mark Weems, tour as a duo called Little Windows, which blends Irish, Appalachian, and old-time gospel with a special focus on tight harmonies in unaccompanied singing. They have their own music school called The NC School of Traditional Music based in Durham. Julee has coordinated Traditional Song Week at the Swannanoa Gathering for nine years, has been on staff at the Irish Arts Week in N.Y., Alaska Fiddle Camp, Schloss Mittersill Arts Conference in Austria, the Swannanoa Gathering’s Celtic Week, Camp Little Windows and various camps and festivals throughout the US. Julee’s approach to music goes beyond its entertainment aspect to focus on the spiritual and emotional wealth that traditional music has to offer to the world. For her, Traditional Song Week is a long-awaited dream come true.
Bill Moore/ Guitar/bouzouki/vocals
Bill has over 20 years of experience playing traditional Irish music, and is co-founder of the very successful band “Celtic Jam” who performed in the southeast for 15 years. Bill plays from time to time with some of the great area performers in N.C., and has accompanied several national artists such as Brian Conway, the great Irish American fiddler. Bill brings a lot of energy and enthusiasm to traditional music, and is a highly-regarded player, his style of playing evolving over the years by playing with great artists in the US and in Ireland.
Andrew Nemchik – Accordion/whistle/vocal
Andrew is newer to traditional Irish music but has a background in several different genres (folk to jazz to pop) and likes to keep himself guessing. After migrating from GA, Andrew met Bill through playing in a church choir and has been following him since picking up new tunes and instruments as he goes along. Has played with Julee and Bill on several occasions all in the name of getting feet to tap and voices to sing along. Is also one half of the local musical duo “Street Corner Vagabonds”.