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IONA's music is a unique, acoustic weave of the traditional music of Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Cornwall, Brittany (France), the Isle of Man and Galicia (Spain). Blending songs, dance tunes, and aires into a rich and stunning tapestry, their style is outstanding in an arena where these traditions are seldom intertwined.

Conceived in 1986, IONA was the musical offspring of Barbara Ryan and Bernard Argent. With fiddler Andrew Dodds and bass guitar player Chuck Lawhorn, IONA has become the leading Celtic group in the Mid-Atlantic region. They are all seasoned performers: entertainers who involve their audiences with the history and cultural backgrounds of the music, with teaching words to the songs -- even those sung in a Celtic tongue, with leading simple Breton dances, with humor, and with every emotion in the spectrum.

An IONA show is known for:

1. Traditional Celtic Material The haunting songs, toe tapping dances and the humor of the Celtic peoples from Scotland to Brittany provide IONA with an incredibly varied repertoire

2. Original Acoustic Arrangements All the members of the band play several instruments, often switching within a piece to achieve their unique sound. They weave tunes from different countries around their songs, pursuing complex rhythms with deft professionalism.

3. Lively Entertaining Presentation Above all, IONA's performances are FUN! Barbara and Bernard teach audiences words to their songs (some in Celtic languages!), lead them in clapping and even encourage them to dance!

Celtic Radio Reviews:

Bands that have stayed together for 20 years are a rarity. Which is an appropriate all around description of IONA. Barbara Tr...

February 19, 2018: Signature
Iona is a group consisting of a host of talented musicians and performers, keen on offering their own rendition of some of th...

December 19, 2014: A Celtic Christmas
What's better than a Christmas album, you say? Well, a Christmas Compilation Album!<br /> <br /> I have to adm...

Most Popular Video:

Browse our library of Iona music:

A Celebration of Twenty

Birken Tree

Branching Out

Holding Our Own

Marc Gunn's A Celtic Christmas

Mid-Winter Light

Nutmeg and Ginger

Signature - Iona


The Sound of Iona

Listener Comments

Member Name: Rindy
Date Posted: 17-Jan-2011
Comments: Awesome thanks for updating us Rhymer. What a great site. Slainte

Member Name: Rhymer
Date Posted: 17-Jan-2011

Comments: I have been following IONA ( Celtic Christian Band) for many years, check them out on the website.www.iona.uk.comThey are awesome!slainteRhymer.

Member Name: Macfive
Date Posted: 05-Nov-2005

Comments: News comes to us from Iona regarding the upcoming schedule! Greetings from IONA. Upcoming IONA shows: We'll be in New York and Virginia in the next two months. Sat Nov 5, 8:00 pm Warwick Valley Winery, Distillery & Orchards, 114 Little York Road, Warwick, NY (973) 258-4858 Sun Nov 27 6:00 & 8:00 pm Winter Concerts at the Old Brogue, in the Snuggery, Old Brogue Irish Pub, Georgetown Pike (Rte 193) & Walker Rd., Great Falls, VA (703) 759-3309 (see below) Sat Dec 3, 7 - 9 pm Hidden Springs Farm House Concert, 438 Riverbend Rd., Great Falls, VA (703) 759-2440 Sat Dec 10. Richmond Celtic Christmas Show, The Richmond Raceway Complex Building "B", 600 E. Laburnum Ave. Richmond, VA (804) 740-6112 Sun Dec 18 4:30-6:45 A Celtic Solstice Celebration & Concert, Ecostewards Alliance, Unity of Fairfax Church, 2854 Hunter Mill Road Oakton, VA Wed Dec 28 1, 2, and 3pm. Sully Plantation, Centreville, VA (703)708-0861. Sat Dec 31, ?05 First Night Williamsburg 2006 Williamsburg, VA For updated info, check the web page: www.IONAmusic.com/perform.htm The 2nd annual Fall Celtic Concert Series at the Old Brogue Irish Pub, Great Falls, VA will take place Sunday nights Nov 6 - Nov 27, 2005. Two seatings 6-7:30 & 8-9:30 pm in the (Smoke-Free) Snuggery The schedule is: November 6 Charlie Zahm, Tad Marks and Mark Sullivan - soulful Scottish ballads November 13 Jody Marshall, Karen Ashbrook, Paul Oorts and Andrea Hoag- a lively instrumental Celtic voyagei November 20 Ocean Orchestra Unplugged- with Jennifer Cutting, Grace Griffith, Lisa Moscatiello and Rosie Shipley - ethereal arrangements of Celtic songs and melodies November 27 IONA - Yes, that's us! Best pan-Celtic quartet on the East Coast! $14.00 Admission or Series Ticket for $48.00 Reservations Recommended - (703) 759-3309. (Please don't contact us for tickets.) More info at http://www.ionamusic.com/brogue.htm See you soon. Barbara, Bernard, Chuck & Andrew Our email program is not "geographically savvy". So if none of these performances is near you, please be patient. We will be back to see you before too long. You are receiving this in lieu of our traditional postcard because you provided your email address to us. If this is an error or if you would rather continue receiving the postcard, please send an email to: and I will try to correct the problem. I apologize for any inconvenience.

Member Name: RivDan
Date Posted: 08-Apr-2005

Comments: QUOTE (CelticRose @ 17-Sep-2004, 11:41 PM) Oh thank you, 3 Ravens! I actually heard Iona today and knew right away they were not the Christian Celtic praise group. But I absolutely loved their music! wow! I plan to get their CD as I loved what I heard so much. wonderful for you 3 Ravens! What a great experience and you get to be with the wonderful band. Let us know all about the evening, ok? when does this all occur? Have fun and keep us posted!    Response:  I've worked for them too. I helped volunteer at the Potomac Celtic Festival in June 1999. I will be going as a customer this June with my boyfriend. Aye!

Member Name: RivDan
Date Posted: 08-Apr-2005

Comments: QUOTE (sir_tal @ 14-Sep-2004, 07:57 PM) I'll be darned. I didn't know there was another Iona. The problem is that while Iona (The Christian Praise Group) is definitely Christian, they are also of the Celtic persuasion. So while they may not be "trad", I would say that either could be discussed here. (I have seen the likes of Wolfstone and Seven Nations on here, which are definitely celtic rock.) Man, that's confusing. Thanx for letting us know, though!-Chris    Response:  Did you say, Seven Nations and Wolfstone? Three Ayes for Ye!


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