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“Thank you for the absolute best, quintessential, ecstatic contra dance of my life! (and I’ve been doing contra for about 30 years) I had tears of joy on my face by the end.” – NW Folklife

McKasson, Alexander, and Cotter, aka MAC, is part of the natural progression of Celtic music in America.

Their story begins in Boston where a troupe of Celtic musicians waited out an apocalyptic snowstorm that had grounded their flights.  The clear course of action was to head to a pub for a tune. All three had been instructors at Alasdair Fraser’s fiddle camps creating a common thread.  It was at this marathon wintry jam session that MAC members Ryan McKasson, Elias Alexander and Colin Cotter first played together as a trio.

Fast-forward to last year’s KVMR Celtic Festival when the three were invited to join Galician piper Carlos Núñez on stage.  MAC was born!

McKasson, Alexander, and Cotter are well-versed in Celtic tradition, and the music that they write and perform is steeped heavily in this timeless tradition while calling upon influences ranging from rock to classical. Their performances reveal artistry, finesse, and virtuosity as they draw from a repertoire of innovative original and traditional tunes.

Ryan McKasson is a Scottish fiddler (former National Scottish Fiddle Champion) and tune writer from Seattle who tours with a number of well-known bands around the world. He is also in demand as a recording artist, appearing on two of Hanneke Cassel’s albums as well as on Alasdair Fraser & Natalie Haas’ album, Highlander’s Farewell.

Elias Alexander is a multi-instrumentalist and singer, originally from Ashland, Oregon, now living in Boston. He tours nationally and internationally with several projects, and has performed with greats such as Carlos Nuñez, Alasdair Fraser, and Gillebrìde MacMillan. He is also a regular faculty member at Alasdair Fraser’s Sierra Fiddle Camp, as well as being in demand for other music camps around the country.

Colin Cotter is a guitarist, fiddler, singer, and songwriter who has toured internationally as the front man in bands and as a guitar accompanist to traditional fiddlers of varying backgrounds. He has released 4 studio albums largely of original music, has shared the stage with the likes of David Bromberg and Alasdair Fraser, and is a regular faculty member at Alasdair Fraser’s Valley of the Moon Scottish Fiddling School and the Mike Block String Camp.

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