Emmet Cahill is a highly trained and skilled musician and can play several instruments. He has a baritone voice and was a principal singer with Irish vocal group Celtic Thunder.
He joined the group in 2010 after the popular Paul Byrom left to pursue a solo career. He has now left the band to focus on his own solo career.
Cahill was born in Mullingar in County Westmeath and became interested in music from an early age. He started piano lessons when he was five years old and started to have singing training when he was seven. This led to him being awarded a scholarship to the High School in Mullingar.
While he was there he studied piano, violin and organ as well as continuing with his voice training. Classical music still holds a special place in Cahill’s heart to this day but he also enjoys other musical styles. He told Irish Music Daily: “In terms of modern music, I really enjoy folk and country music, but then again you can’t beat a bit of swing and jazz!”
He points out that being a classical singer isn’t just a matter of training his voice and turning up to sing. He has had to learn Italian, French and German and spends a lot of his day practising singing on his own, in a group and also the drama aspect of the show.
He says: “Aside from three hours training per day you have to study music, learn languages, have group sessions and opera and theatre class. There is really a lot more to it than just getting up and singing the song, a lot of preparation goes into it.”
He went on to get a degree in Music Performance from the Royal Irish Academy of Music.
Cahill performed in a number of stage productions before he joined Celtic Thunder. He was no stranger to playing for large crowds in prestigious venues having performed at the Gaiety Theatre and the National Concert Hall in Dublin. He was awarded both the John McCormack Society’s Bursary for the most promising young singer, and the most promising young singer at the Royal Irish Academy of Music in 2010.
That year, Cahill joined Celtic Thunder and was an instant hit with fans. The Heritage tour was his first with the group and his showpiece song was Kindred Spirits which was written especially for him by Phil Coulter. Cahill said: “It’s been a fantastic year for me. It’s been a rollercoaster and coming on tour with Celtic Thunder has been the pinnacle.”
During Celtic Thunder’s Mythology tour Cahill performed the haunting Irish ballad Always There. It is a version of the Irish classic, Danny Boy. Cahill also lets his hair down during the more upbeat songs such as Seven Drunken Nights, Galway Girl and Star of the County Down.
Cahill is a massive sports fan and has been delighted to have been given the opportunity to sing at top Irish venues like Croke Park and the Aviva Stadium before sporting events. He has also performed for the former Irish President Mary McAleese.
Cahill continues to perform and tour as a solo artist and has big plans for the future. He said: “I have lots of ambitions. Having just recently moved on from Celtic Thunder into a solo career I am very excited for what’s coming up in the near future for me. I am delighted with what’s being proposed so far, so all I can say to my wonderful fans is to watch this space.”