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Learn music theory and Irish language from Celtic Thunder star

You will soon be able to refer to Celtic Thunder star Colm Keegan as ‘Mr Keegan’ as he is about to branch out into a new venture – teaching.

He will be offering online courses on Irish language and music theory. The site launches today so people from all over the world will be able to log on to learn from now.

Colm is currently rather a busy man but took a bit of time out to answer some questions about his exciting new chapter.

Colm Keegan launches new website to teach music theory and Irish language

Irish Music Daily: Hi Colm, welcome back to Irish Music Daily, it’s been a busy few months for you since we last spoke!

Colm Keegan: Hi Pat, thanks for having me back again! It certainly has, we haven’t really stopped! The last 9 months has consisted of the 2nd Cruise with Celtic Thunder, followed immediately by our very first Symphony tour before embarking on a 4 month Very Best Of tour around North America and then 2 months solo tour with Laura! So we’re back this week for this first time properly since October, which is a nice feeling. Nice to be back and nice to be back knowing everything to this point has gone well!

IMD: We see you’re setting up a new teaching website entitled ‘CKonLine’. Tell us what brought this about?

CK: That’s right Pat, I’m really, really excited about CKonLine. Teaching is something I’ve always wanted to do, it’s what I went to University and obtained my degree in and since the age of 11 or 12 I knew being in the classroom was the life for me. Singing was always just a hobby for me, something I loved doing and never dreamed of being in a position to do it full-time, so the last few years with Celtic Thunder has really been a dream come true for me. I love CT, as well as my solo tours with Laura and am certainly not ready to give that up, but I miss teaching hugely. So, long story short, I’ve decided to set up a website that will enable me to tour for certain months of the year and teach online for the other months!

IMD: How will the new course work? Are the music and language separate, or are you hoping to combine the two?

CK: The two subjects will be separate. I didn’t want to dive head first into the deep end from the start, so I thought I would take one step at a time with this. For that reason, I’ll only be teaching Music Theory from the beginning and after a few months I will begin an Introduction to the Irish Language. Music Theory is the backbone of everything to do with instruments, writing songs, how everything musical is put together and people often have the misconception that you need to have a musical ear to learn theory, which is not true. Theory in Music can range to the simplest of equivalents as 2+2=4 in Maths, everybody can learn and I’m really looking forward to the opportunity of being the person who gets to teach them.

IMD: How did you come up with such a novel idea? Have fans expressed a desire for these kind of courses?

CK: The idea struck me during the Very Best Of tour and I’ve been working tirelessly since to try and make it work. My future students will be based all over the world and won’t have to lave their own living room! So it’s very exciting. Nobody had expressed an interest so I’m still waiting to see what the demand will be like, but I just thought I would stick with subjects I know a bit about and, more importantly, have a huge love for and offer them as a basis on which we can build.

IMD: How much personal involvement will you have in the teaching. Are your a fluent Irish speaker, or will you be drafting in other people.

CK: Like everything else I do, what you see is what you get!! This course is only run by me, I have an administration team on board who have been absolutely terrific at setting up the website, they will be in touch with everyone and anyone interested and then, at the time of the class, it’s just me and the participant. No better luxury for any teacher than that. We can learn in everyone’s individual time.

IMD: What kind of people are you hoping to reach out to?

CK: This course bears no limits. It’s target audience is everyone from age 1-101, with one criteria, a love and ambition to learn. That’s it! Together we can tackle the most basic of things to the most complex and, who knows, maybe in the future one of the students can join the team and become a teacher!! Make my job easier!! 😉

IMD: Does this signify a change in your career? Will you still be pursuing all your musical goals or will something have to give?

CK: Not at all. This site changes nothing, only enhances my opportunities during my ‘time-off’. I’m still a member of Celtic Thunder, I’m still hoping to record my debut album this year and I’m still hoping to continue solo tours. As Nelson Mandela said, ” we will have plenty of time to rest when we pass, let’s make the most of living”, that’s what I plan on doing! I’ve been so lucky to have the most incredible fans the last few years, I’m really looking forward to that growing and continuing to blossom new relationships. CKonLine is my newest and most exciting project, can’t wait to launch it this week and see what the response is going to be like!

Thanks to Colm for taking the time out to speak with us. We wish him all the best for his new project.

For more information about CKonLine check out the website.

Colm has also uploaded a video to mark the launch of CKonLine. It features an acoustic version of the song ‘When Your Feet Don’t Touch the Ground’ by Gary Barlow, which comes from the Broadway musical ‘Finding Neverland’.

Take a look at the video below.

Written by Patrick Kehoe

Patrick Kehoe

Pat Kehoe is a writer for Irish Music Daily.
His favourite Irish music bands are the Dubliners and Planxty
You can follow him on

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