Thursday, January 4, 2018

Killian Mahaffey

Killian Mahaffey describes himself as "an Irish neoclassical guitarist" and in the recent period his name has been coming up in concerts in the Seattle area. This publication sent him some questions to find out more about him and these are his responses. Thanks for answering, Killian!
On Facebook you announced that you have a new band. What can you tell us about it?
It will be hard rock band called Banshee's Cry. The lineup will consist of myself, established musicians from Irish rock bands, and we're collaborating with a couple of internationally known musicians who are big names within the industry. We will release more detailed information once we release the first single.
This sounds like an exciting development! When can we hear a bit of the new music?
Very exciting! Unfortunately, can't do a preview just yet, we are in the final stages of recording the album.
In the Seattle region you have established your reputation as a solo guitarist. You also announced you have a solo EP coming up. Is this an instrumental guitar EP with no vocals and no drums, just guitars?
It'll be full band minus vocals. It will consist of a similar lineup as the album, just easier to do it that way. I'd been meaning to do it for quite sometime, and I'm really glad to get around it. I'm really fortunate to be able to play with such amazing people.
Please tell us about yourself. You say that you are Irish. Does Seattle treat you well? Do you do much hiking or skiing here?
My family is from Ireland. I actually became a musician a bit late in the game, started playing guitar when I was 17, but after a certain point it doesn't really matter how long you've played your instrument, matters more what you do with that time. I'm in America for the time being to take care of family matters. Ireland certainly holds a special place in my heart. The Seattle area is great, a lot of musical history that's hard to ignore, the people are nice. I've done a bit of hiking, but I have much too horrible of a balance to do anything like skiing. I am a fan of the colder weather, though. The summer heat can be quite dreadful.
How long have you been playing guitar? What inspired you to get a guitar and start playing it?
I have been playing guitar for about 8 years. It's just something I was drawn to, my dad pays guitar too, so I imagine I got some of it from him. The first two albums I got as a kid were Iron Maiden's Piece of Mind and Megadeth's Cryptic Writings, and I think those had a significant impact on me.
Where can people hear the music that you have recorded so far?
These upcoming releases will actually be my debut efforts, I've never released music officially before, there's only live videos. Really looking forward to finally getting something out there.
For you, what are the motivations for having a band? I have seen videos of you playing guitar alone. Why the change in format?
I have enjoyed my career so far as a solo musician, but I was looking for a new challenge. An Irish band came to my attention and I instantly became a fan and it went from there. Then some very well know industry people got wind of the new project they expressed a desire to be involved in the project as they felt it was an exciting fresh approach.
Why does it say on Facebook that you started on March 18, 2016? Why that date in particular?
That was my first solo performance, I played in bands before and my first time playing live was in April 2013.
You have shared the stage with many artists so far. Exodus, Uli Jon Roth, Warbringer, and so many more. How have you been able to perform at so many shows so far?
I was in a pretty active band for a couple years before I went solo. Sometimes a really amazing bill will come up and there'll be multiple big bands on it. Uli Jon Roth, Jennifer Batten, and Andy Timmons were all part of the Ultimate Guitar Experience, which I guested at. It's been quite a journey to get to this point.
It looks like 2018 will be a busy year for you! Do you have any other news to tell us? By the way, have you played in the Everett area yet?!
2018 will indeed be very busy, we did a lot of behind the scenes work in 2017 and we're very close to being done. I have yet to play in the North End, I will see what I can do to change that.

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