Trio of musicians bringing Celtic ballads to Carson City |

Trio of musicians bringing Celtic ballads to Carson City

Nevada Appeal staff report

Featuring humorous and serious songs of love, loss, adventure and yearning, Fortunate Strangers will bring its Celtic style to the Brewery Arts Center on Saturday.

The performance, highlighting music from both Ireland and Scotland, will be from 7 to 9 p.m. and is part of the BAC’s Celtic music series.

Combining the experience of three performers from the Bay Area and the High Sierra, the band derives its name from an unlikely meeting.

In 2010, Berkeley resident Celia Ramsay and her husband toured the town of Dingle at the southwestern corner of Ireland. They visited O’Flaherty’s Bar, where they found Joseph and Kathy Bly of Gardnerville. Joe whispered to Kathy he was sure he knew the woman who had just walked in. After conversing, they put it together: Joe, Kathy, and Celia had all attended the Lark Camp, an annual musical gathering held in Mendocino, Calif.

Band members describe the chance encounter as a fortunate, small-world meeting of folks who didn’t know each other, but soon became fast friends.

Banding together as Fortunate Strangers, the group strives to present a varied program with the mood, tempo and key all carefully crafted. Their performances often include a popular song or two so the audience can sing along.

Ramsay, with an extensive background in Scottish folk music, provides the vocals. The Blys’ long history in Irish music blend to create a Celtic musical experience aimed at being both expansive and focused. True to the Celtic tradition, their songs range from lush and full to haunting and angular.

Northern Nevadans may recognize the Blys from the Carson Valley-based Celtic group Cíana. Ramsay is a founding member of Bay Area group Glamourie.

For tickets and information, go to, or visit the BAC’s Expresso Yourself Café at 449 W. King St., or call 775-883-1976.