The Band

Based in the Dallas/Fort Worth area of Texas, Spriggan plays traditional and not-so traditional Celtic songs and dance tunes, often adding a unique flare and twist to the music. The band consists of Gypsy Youngraven (vocals, guitar, bodhrán, mandolin), Chris Arterburn (flute, penny whistle, concertina, bouzouki, harmony vocals), Michael James (guitar, bodhrán), and Candace Schell (fiddle, mandoline, bodhrán, harmony vocals) . Spriggan plays music from Ireland, Scotland, England, the Shetlands, Immigrant songs from the US, and even the odd original tune here and there. Spriggan has played
  • Scottish Rite Celtic Music Festival,
  • R.E.L.E.A.F. Celtic Music Festival,
  • World Fest,
  • Celtic Heritage Festival,
  • several pubs around the D/FW area,
  • The San Antonio Children's Museum,
  • provided incidental music for a documentary,
  • and appears in the movie Hecklers From Mars.
Spriggan is available for bookings and private parties & engagements (click on the Contact button to reach us).

Gypsy Youngraven

(vocals, bodhrán, guitar)

Gypsy Youngraven

(yes, that is her actual name—why do you ask?) could have done many things with her life, only the Gods of Irony decreed that she should spend her days (well, some of them at any rate) singing rebel songs in smoke-filled Irish bars. It would be simple to say ‘the rest is history’, but doing so would leave one with the profound sense of ‘and..,?’

 Sure, we’ll not have that, will we?

 Gypsy began playing guitar, singing and composing in the mid 80s, picked up the bodhrán a few years later, and she doesn’t exactly know how long she’s been playing mandolin – at least longer than a fortnight. She had her performance debut in the summer of 1992.

 Despite her curious proclivity for rebel songs, Gypsy is a classically trained singer who, whilst at university, performed at the St Louis Cathedral (New Orleans), the Meyerson Symphony Centre (Dallas), and with the Irving Symphony. She was also for many years with another Irish-fusion band called Ravens.

 In her spare time (cue laughter), she plays with the TIMES band and at the Gilligans seisiun. Buy her a pint, and she’ll tell you an embarrassing story about somebody you don’t know – but at least it’ll be entertaining, bedamn.

 Gypsy has been influenced by many musicians over her years as a performer, but of late she’s really only paying attention to Shane MacGowan, Dave King, Tony Duggins, and Susan McKeown.

Candace Schell

(fiddle, mandolin)

Candace Schell

has been fiddling around since 1992. She's played with Ugly Customers, Castle Kelly, Sibin and Bungle Rye. She plays fiddle, mandolin, bodhrán if she must, and she'd like to pick up the accordion again if she can get around to tuning it. With Bungle Rye, she has been up and down the east coast of the US and played fairs in Kansas City, Houston and Dallas. Candace has played in the bright, sunshiney parks of San Francisco and when that got too bright, played seisiuns in the pubs of west and south Ireland. She joined Spriggan in 2000 as a guest musician and when she moved to Texas in 2002 joined the band as a full-fledged member. Candace is very fond of her bandmates, likes Black Bush whiskey and adores her banjo-playing boyfriend who only likes her for her mandolin.

Michael (Misha) James

(guitar, bodhrán)

Michael James

first became involved in music with high school choir to avoid taking shop or home-ec again. After several years of study and practice in choral music, he landed a role in a musical, cast as the only major part that did not sing. Thus encouraged, he pursued acting. Just prior to being accepted at Scarborough Faire the Renaissance Festival ™, Michael heard his first Celtic tune, which opened with a bodhrán solo. After watching the Chieftains’ bodhrán player and subsequently beating the hell out of a cardboard box, Michael was presented with a drum of his own, his very first instrument (thank you, Mom). He quickly discovered though that the local Celtic scene contained a plethora of such drummers (‘another moron with a bodhrán!’) and so turned to guitar. Gypsy gave him his first lessons in ’92 which shows just how strangely circular fate can be. He also likes it when people buy him drinks and while he knows that nobody reads these profiles, he figures, what the heck…it couldn’t hurt.

Chris Arterburn

(whistle, flute, concertina)

Chris Arterburn

has been playing Celtic music for quite a while. After the obligatory piano lessons, (where he got bored with the first-grade books and started picking up Joplin rags) Chris put his musical career on hold for a few years. He was a member of the Collegium Musicum while at college in Missouri and got his first taste of Renaissance faires at that time. After moving to Michigan, and finding out that he could get a tune out of just about anything, he joined SpiralDanse, which performed around the area. Chris endured one too many cold winters, though, and he picked up and moved to Texas, where he soon connected with the local Celtic music and Renaissance faire scene. Chris also played with Amberhawke for a year.

 Chris plays whistle, flute, and concertina, with the odd tune or two on the bouzouki, bodhrán, kazoo, slide whistle, recorder, and anything else around. He travels extensively and tries to attend Celtic music sessions wherever he may be during the week. Currently, Chris is the performing company Music Director at Scarborough Faire, and he has worked extensively in instrumental music with musicians from a number of other Renaissance faires.

Spriggan's CD, Mind The Gap, is available right now direct from the band at eBay! SPRIGGAN: Mind the Gap
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