About PJ

NEWS 2013:

Oct: Contributor /Consultant to recently  published 'The Encyclopedia of Music in Ireland' ( UCD Press)."
Oct:  Studio mixing work complete on forthcoming (double) album 'Live at The Temple Gate Ennis.' by The Teetotalers
(Martin Hayes - fiddle/ Kevin Crawford - flute,whistle, vocals & John Doyle - guitar, bouzouki and vocals). This album due for release Xmas '13. 

July:  PJ's latest novel (his 6th book) 'A Nightingale Falling ( Old Forge Books ) is released on paperback.

Aug:  Filming of 'A Nightingale Falling ' completed. General release expected in Spring 2014.


Sept: Mixing album ( recorded 'LIve' in Ennis, Co Clare  in Jan of '13) for The Teetotalers (Martin Hayes-fiddle/KevinCrawford - flute and John Doyle - gtr/bouzouki/vocals.)




Welcome to Old Forge Books, the online home of PJ Curtis. Born in the village of Kilnaboy, Co. Clare, at the edge of the Burren, author, musicologist and lecturer PJ Curtis has been involved in music and writing since the mid-seventies.

Old Forge Books brings PJs talents to the world wide web.

2011 -
  • Feb: Invited as Guest Lecturer (Irish Music) at the University of Montana in Missoula. MT, USA. Public talks delivered at Butte and Missoula , MT. and in Hollywood, Los Angeles for Notable Arts Productions.
  • Aug: Filming of short story 'The Road on Souls' on location in the Burren, Co Clare.
  • Sept: "The Music of Ghosts' ( orig. published 2005) published for Kindle here
  • Nov: Premier screening of 'The Road of Souls' ( Dir: Darret Daly for MIxed Bag Media
2010 - Music research completed for the the film Warhorse ( Dir: Seven Spielberg.)

2007 - Consultant contributor to The Encyclopaedia of Irish Music
2006 - 2008 Lecturer in Irish Music Studies- 2 year Diploma Course, University College Galway
2006 - His 4th book, and his 2nd novel, The Lightning Tree published on Brandon Books
2006 - The Lightning Tree serialized over 5 nights on RTE Radio 1 Book on One. Reader Martina Carroll.
2005 - Awarded Honorary Master Of Arts Degree by National University of Ireland, citation read: "For outstanding work and achievements since the 1970s as Broadcaster, Record Producer, Author and Music Historian."
2005 - Narrator (and Subject) of Radio Documentary Anvils In The Blood broadcast on RTE Radio 1. (Produced by award winning Radio Producer
Tim Lehane.)
2004 - Narrated story The Music of Ghosts (with original music by Josephine Marsh) on Lyric FM.

PJ is a published author with foive books to his credit:
'A Nightingale Falling - a novel.' (Old Forge Books) published on Kndle 2012 Buy Here. 
'Notes From The Heart - A Celebration of Irish Traditional Music' (Poolbeg 1994)
'One Night In The Life of RV Mulrooney'. A Novel (Poolbeg 1995)
'The Music Of Ghosts' (Old Forge Books November 2003) AVAILABLE NOW FOR KINDLE HERE
'The Lightning Tree', published on Brandon Books in March 2006.

Essay included in 'The Quite Quarter - 10 Years of Irish Writing (Publ: RTE Lyric FM). inc. such writers as Carlo Gebler, Ken Bruen, Dermot Bolger & John Moriarty)

Please check out this new song by Danny Ellis on You Tube:The Bramble & The Brine with images by Mike Considine. 
Having returned to Ireland in 1974 after many years exploring the world, PJ joined Mulligan Records as an A & R Manager and subsequently as a record producer.

57 album productions later and having worked in Nashville, Memphis, San Diego, San Francisco and Phoenix Arizona, PJ still works as a freelance record producer. His credits include working with some of the worlds finest artists including Altan, Pumpkinhead, Dolores Keane, Maura O'Connell, Freddie White, Scullion, Stockton's Wing, Charlie McGettigan, Mary Black, Frances Black, Arcady, Liam Clancy & Tommy Makem, Sean Keane (of The Chieftains), Davy Spillane, Bela Fleck & Jerry Douglas, Albert Lee, Rory Gallagher, Sean Tyrrell, Sue Harris (Arizona) Jerry Lynch, Mick Hanly, The Barry McCabe Band, Matt Manning, The Josephine Marsh Band, Sean Garvey, Mary McPartland and Ronan Leonard.

PJ won two N.A.I.R.D (National American Independent Record Distributors) Awards for Altan's albums 'The Red Crow' (1990) and 'Harvest Storm'.(1992).

His professional broadcasting career began in the 1980's with the 'Roots of Rock' and 'The House of R&B' on RTE Radio 2. The ground-breaking radio programme, 'The House of R&B', was to be the first programme ever on Irish radio to regularly feature authentic Blues, Black Gospel, Tex-Mex, Cajun and Zydeco, African and World Music et al.

A number of 'specialist' radio programmes and documentaries followed, among them, 'Personal Best ', a programme devoted to Ethnic, Roots and 'World Music' (before the term was used), for which he won the 1986 Jacob's National Radio Award.

Between 1988 and 2004, PJ has broadcast a wide variety of Roots/World/ 'Specialist' radio programmes and Documentaries on B.B.C. (N.I.), Century Radio (where he won a 1989 Smithwicks/Hot Press National Radio Award for his eclectic ' Rhythm & Roots' programme), Clare FM, and, more recently 'Reels To Ragas' on Lyric FM, for which he won a Fairplay For Airplay National Radio Award in Jan of 2002.

As well as his broadcasting and record producing work, PJ has delivered many lectures /talks and workshops on Irish traditional, Rock 'n Roll, R&B, Roots, Gospel etc. both at home, in the U.K. (Univ. of Bristol) and the USA.(Univ. of S. Francisco and Univ. of Nth Carolina, Charlotte N.C.).

Various lectures/talks/seminars/workshops delivered at Universities, Colleges, Secondary Schools, Education & Arts Centers/Music - Radio Seminars and other venues in Ireland, (Galway Univ/Cork), UK (Bristol University), and in the USA (New College, San Francisco /Charlotte University. N.C.) .

Lecture Titles:
-The Crooked Road - A History of Irish Traditional Music and Song
- The Development of Rock From African and European Roots'
- The History of the Slide Guitar 1900-2000
- A History of the Uilleann Piping on Record since 1900
- A History of Black Gospel from 1900-2000
- Record Production: The Role of the Record Producer in Popular Music'
- Voices of The World - Unplugged (a short history of Acappella Singing)
- The Life and Legend of Robert Johnson - King Of the Delta Bluesmen
- The Influence of Irish Trad. Music & Song on American Bluegrass and Country Music
- From O'Riada To Riverdance: The development of Irish Music 1960-2000
- Music and Landscape 2007


For Radio
2003 - New Adventures in Broadcasting for Best Radio Music Documentary (BCI) . Series producer for 5 music Docos commissioned by Connemara Community Radio.
2001 -Fairplay For Airplay National Radio Award for Reels to Ragas World Music programme on Lyric FM.
1989 - Smithwicks/Hot Press National Radio Award forCentury Radio Programme, 'Rhythm & RootsFM.
1986 - Jacobs National Radio Award for RTE Radio 1 programme, Personal Best.

For Record Production
1992 - National American Independent Record Distributors (N.A.I.R.D) Award for Altan's 'Harvest Storm'.
1990 - National American Independent Record Distributors (N.A.I.R.D) Award for Altan's 'The Red Crow'

For Writing
2004 - Winner of The Bram Stoker Dracula Gothic Short Story Competition with'The Stone Goddess'
2000 - Winner of the IRMA (Int. Regional Mag. Assc) International Award of Merit for Written Essay (Toronto).

Email: Email Old Forge Books
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