Thomas McCarthy is an Irish Traveller, singer and storyteller from Birr in County Offaly. His family are the McCarthys who settled there generations ago. He comes from a long line of Traveller traditional singers and musicians.
Recipient of the 2019 TG4 Gradam Ceoil Singer of the Year award, McCarthy is described by Gradam Ceoil as having ‘a voice of great strength, tone, character and beauty.. His art is particularly illustrative of the power of storytelling through song, beyond simply singing the song'
In his own words, the key to his singing is knowing the story behind each song – ‘That’s more important than the song. The song is nothing without the story.’
Tradition Now, a partnership between NCH and The Arts Council, takes a unique look at progressive traditional music in a fast-moving Ireland.