Growing up in the wild and beautiful County Clare, on the west coast of Ireland, singer/songwriter Michael Darcy was surrounded and inspired by traditional music at a very early age. He began playing the accordion when he was only 6, competing in several national competitions over the span of a few years, winning multiple awards. He was also part of a successful, local set-dancing group that won two All-Ireland titles, as well as first place at the World Championships in Manchester, England 1997.
Following exposure to a cassette tape of legendary Irish folk singer Christy Moore, Michael was inspired to focus his musical attention on the guitar. It was then through the passion of this new instrument, he discovered the magic of such bands like Planxty, The Waterboys, The Pogues, The Dubliners, The Clancy Brothers & Tommy Makem and so on. From further afield, he started listening to the gritty American sounds of Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Steve Earle, John Prine and Guy Clark to name a few.
By 19, Michael was playing solo gigs across the west of Ireland, establishing a strong musical reputation as a bright and ambitious new talent. At age 25, he embarked on a life-changing uproot across the Atlantic, with guitar in tow, arriving in his current hometown of Toronto, Canada. He quickly and naturally immersed himself into the vivacious city’s live music scene and has been performing gigs regularly there ever since.
In October 2012, Michael was invited to perform at the opening night of the very first Irish bar in Port-au-Prince, on the island of Haiti called, ‘The Irish Embassy’. A once-in-a-lifetime experience, in which he also claims to have drank the very first pint of Guinness served in Haiti! Broadening his international audience once again, he was off to New York City during December 2012, where he performed at several venues in Manhattan and the Bronx, including the legendary ‘An Beal Bocht Café’.
2013 was another monumental year, where on St. Patrick’s Day, Michael made an Irish-themed Canadian television appearance on CP24 Breakfast Channel, along with a few musician friends. Later that year in June, he seized the opportunity to perform in Las Vegas at the famous Rí Rá Irish Pub, Mandalay Bay Hotel during a week-long residency with The Danny Burns Band. During the summer of 2015, Michael and his band performed a well-received, rootsy, rollicking set at Toronto's Festival of Beer, sharing the stage with such top Irish acts as Hermitage Green and Delorentos. He has opened for Canadian Celtic Punk giants The Mahones and has performed shows in some of Toronto’s most legendary venues including the iconic Horseshoe Tavern, The Dakota Tavern & The Burdock Music Hall. His guitar has also brought him to such beautiful places as St. John's Newfoundland where he got to perform some gigs there during the summer of 2018.
Working with producer/engineer Aaron Comeau (Skydiggers), he released his debut full-length album 'Simple Drop of Rain' in December 2018. It features 11 original tracks and garnered positive reviews & radio play on both sides of the Atlantic. Michael and his band played a release party show in front of a packed house at the Dakota Tavern in downtown Toronto. 2019 was also off to a great start when he was invited to perform his first show in western Canada as special guest of 'The Saltwater Sessions' at a sold-out theatre in Kimberley, BC. He played support to acclaimed Irish singer-songwriter Mundy on his first ever show in Toronto in March 2019, and was invited to perform with him again in 2020 where he joined the 'Galway Girl' singer onstage at the legendary Horseshoe Tavern for an encore in front of an enthusiastic crowd. He has returned to the studio and has been busy working on material for album no. 2 with his exciting and dynamic new group, “Michael Darcy & the Atlantic Tramps”, a musical marriage of both Celtic & Americana featuring a combination of mostly original material along with some old traditional Irish folk songs & tunes re-imagined. He just released a new 3-track EP “Atlantic Tramps Live” which was recorded in front of an attentive live audience and will serve as a taster of what to expect from the upcoming sophomore record due out later in 2020. So stay tuned for more exciting news and gigs coming soon!!!
“there's a fine blend of folk, modern roots and trad throughout.” – BOB MERSEREAU, CBC.
“A comforting country sound resonates throughout....Darcy’s honest lyrics are indicative of the classic country song” – IRISH MUSIC MAGAZINE.