2022 Canadian Folk Music Awards Nominee - "Best Traditional Singer"
ABOUT PAT CHESSELL
A Story Steeped in Sound
In a country that loves its Celtic music, it’s no surprise that Vancouver’s Pat Chessell has become known as one of the most exciting roots artists in Western Canada. Pat’s rootsy vocal style, charismatic stage presence and expert musicianship (guitar) are making for an ever-growing audience of enthusiastic fans.
While his mostly original music falls solidly under the broad umbrella of ‘Celtic’, Pat’s range is prodigious and eclectic. It’s been variously described as straight-ahead “folk”, “upbeat Celtic influenced Canadian folk/pop”, and “moving mid-and-up-tempo contemporary Celtic”, among other labels. His tunes have also, on occasion, known to be tinged with Americana influences.
But, to cut to the chase, it’s all Pat’s music. Its music played and performed, and often written, in Pat’s distinctive and unique voice; strongly rooted in the Celtic tradition, but with an open-hearted connection to the place he calls home and the modern world around him. His lyrics are at turns profound – or witty and high-spirited – but always dynamic and relatable.
Pat was born into a Canadian family, British Columbia-based, with roots in Ireland and Canada’s East Coast. A lover of Celtic traditions since childhood, he’s been playing for as long as he can remember and performing in public since his early teens. His first real gigs were in a guest spot with popular Belfast folk singer Danny Burns of the legendary Irish group, The Wolfhound. By the end of high school he was playing more than 100 shows a year, primarily in the dark pubs and rustic halls around Vancouver. His skills as a guitar player, singer, songwriter, and performer were honed and refined through this time. Today, the singer and guitarist annually performs more than twice that number. And, not one to rest on his laurels, he’s recently studied with world-renowned (and Grammy-nominated) Irish guitarist, multi-instrumentalist, singer, songwriter and producer, John Doyle. He’s also trained with Aoife Clancy from the famous Irish
Clancy clan. After years of working hard and paying his dues, and getting really good at what he does, he’s lauded as the hardest working musician on the local music scene.
And he’s now poised to move into new territory as we all move out of pandemics into a vibrant and renewed live music scene. It is clear that, in an era of one-dimensional singers and disposable artists, Pat Chessell has carved a richly unique sound and presence that’s organic, authentic and entirely engaging. He’s developed a singular guitar style that is the result of talent, diligence, and practice – and his vocals convey a truth and passion that is turning
heads in the Celtic and folk music worlds and beyond.