Ali Barnes

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About Ali

An experienced performer specialising in Folk & Traditional music - available for bookings and teaching.
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Ali Barnes is an experienced performer specialising in Folk & Traditional music, with a vast repertoire of Irish, Scottish and English tunes at her hand. As a full-time, freelance musician, Ali has spent the last 12 years performing solo and with numerous Ceilidh and Irish bands in a range of venues and settings, from village halls to the Dorchester Hotel. Including TV appearences on: E4’s “Made In Chelsea” (twice), BBC1’s “This Week”, ITV’s “TOWIE”, BBC2’s “Great British Menu” and performing for celebrities including David Mitchell, Jeremy Clarkson, Emma Watson, Charlie Boorman, Trinny Woodall, Noel Gallagher, Kirsty Alsop and Theo Wallcot amoung others. As a fiddle player she has performed across the world in counties including Malta (three times), Florida, Italy, Portugal, Sweden and France, and as a fiddler and singer she has appeared at many festivals including Sidmouth Folkweek, Bromyard Folk Festival, Banbury Folk Festival, Enfield Town Show, Chippenham Folk Festival, Alexandra Park Summerfest, Wimborne Folk Festival, Crediton Folk Weekend and Beachbreak Live. Ali runs the well renowned ceilidh band 'Licence to Ceilidh' who she regularly performs with as a Fiddle player and also Caller, but often performs with other ceilidh bands as well. She provides solo traditional music for drinks receptions at weddings and events and regularly performs as a duo with her husband Philippe Barnes. Ali is also a regular on the London Irish session scene and is often booked at pubs across London. Full TV Credits: ITV 'Sanditon' E4 'Made in Chelsea': S12 Christmas Special E4 'Made in Chelsea': S3 BBC1 'This Week' BBC2 'Great British Menu': S2 Finale ITV 'This Time Next Year': S3 ITV 'Loose Women' ITV 'TOWIE'

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5 out of 5
3 verified reviews

Ali's Reviews

From customers:

Stefanie K
5 years ago, for a Corporate event in London
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5 out of 5

Hi Ali and the Trad for London musicians, I just wanted to send over a quick thank you to the trio you provided for our cocktail reception last Friday. The music was just right for our event and really captured the vibe that we were going for, i'd be happy to recommend you to anyone in the future. Best wishes

Toria J
7 years ago, for a Wedding in Fosscross Ln
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5 out of 5

Hello Scotch on the Rocks. You guys played our wedding at Cripps Barn at the weekend and my wife (!) and I would just like to say that you were absolutely outstanding and exactly what we were looking for. We had lots of nervous pals from overseas who had never ceilidh danced before and so many of them came up afterwards and said how much fun they had. One even said she needed to find a Scottish guy to marry. You were brilliant and really made the occasion for us. We also weren’t sure about booking a ceilidh band so far from Scotland but felt we were in great hands.

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Ali's Song list

Ali has a vast and ever growing repertoire of music from across the British Isles, she can also learn pieces on request. Here is a list of some of her favourites:
- Irish Tunes:
Out on the Ocean
Langstom's Pony
Martin Wynne's
The Musical Priest
Drowse Maggie
Blarney Pilgrim
Maid of Mount Cisco
Chapel Bell
Bucks of Oranmore
Dr. Gilberts
Swallowtail Reel
Charlie Hunter's
Wind That Shakes The Barley
Banish Misfortune
Congress Reel
Toss the Feathers
Star of Munster
Christmas Eve
The Kesh
Lark in the Morning
Silver Spear
Connaughtman's Rambles
Donegal Lass
Corner House
Cararoe & more...
- Scottish/Shetland Tunes:
Mason's Apron
Mrs McLeod
De'il Among the Tailors
Ramnee Ceilidh
Stan Chapman's
High Road to Linton
Cock of the North
Roddy McDonald's Fancy
Drummond Castle
New Rigged Ship
Da Ferry Reel
Jack that Broke the Prison Door
Donald Blue
Staten Island
Lorna's Reel
Jig of Slurrs
Atholl Highlanders
Trip to Windsor
MacArthur Road
Far From Home
Cailiope House
Cavers of Kirkcudbright and more...
- English Tunes:
Princess Royal
Horses Brawl
Bear Dance
Maid of the Mill
Jimmy Allen
History Man
English Country Garden
Broken Rifles
Abbots Bromley Horn Dance
Jacky Tar
Liberty Bell
Hexam Races
Enlist for a Sailor
Cuckoo's Nest
Willie Taylors Table Top Hornpipe
Jack's Maggot
If You Will Not Have Me You May Let Me Go...
Gypsy Hornpipe, and more...
- Ceremony Music/Slow pieces:
Sí Beag Sí Mor
Ashokan Farewell
Hector the Hero
The Skye Boat Song
Marnie Swanson of the Grey Coast
Christmas Tale
History Man
Danny Boy
Wedding March (Wagner)...

Ali's Prices

Note: prices may vary based on travel distance. For an exact quote, click “Check availability”.

Standard Prices
Performance durationPrice
Short performance (up to 15 min)£125
Up to 1 hour£312.50
Up to 2 hours£375
Up to 3 hours£2.50
Fiddle to play with band
Fiddler player to play for a band along with other musicians
Wedding ceremony
This includes music before the service begins, music during the signing of the register, and music as guests leave.
Drinks reception
Two performances of up to 45 mins each during your drinks reception
Customer questions

What if my timings change after I've booked you?

It's usually not a problem and i'm happy to be flexible, if it was quite a big change it would just depend on the date, the location and details like that, also how much advance warning I have :-)

Can you provide an iPod/DJ service before and between your sets?

I have a carefully crafted Celtic music playlist I can pop in if time once set-up and during a break - unless just playing acoustically.

How much time do you need to set up?

30minutes or less!

Can I pick the pieces you play from the set list?

Yes certainly!

Do you bring all the equipment you need to perform?

Yes, usually the solo fiddle is done acoustically, particularly for a ceremony. But I also have a small speaker set-up for events that require it and a battery amp for playing outside.

Can you learn specific pieces before the event?

Yes no problem at all!
Folk, Ceilidh, Traditional English folk, Traditional Irish folk, Traditional Scottish folk, Folk rock, Irish rock, Welsh folk
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Event types:
Wedding, Wedding proposal, Funeral / Memorial service, Hotel / Restaurant event, Bar / Club / Venue event, Private event, Corporate event, Charity event, Concert, Recording session, Cruise, Burns night, Birthday party, Christmas party, New Year's Eve
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