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Posted on Tue, Mar 13, 2012 : 10:46 a.m.

Blackthorn returns to the Ark for American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network fundraiser

By Staff

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Popular Irish music band Blackthorn—featuring Ann Arbor's own Fred Klein, who teaches at Haisley Elementary—usually plays gigs in the metro Detroit area; but for the third year in a row, they'll play at the Ark on Sunday, March 25 at 7:30 p.m. as a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN).

Blackthorn has been offering their uniquely rich tapestry of Celtic music around the Great Lakes since 1984. Traditional songs of emigration, sea shanties, lively jigs and reels, and haunting ancient airs combine with some of Ireland's best contemporary songs for a musical experience that evokes the beauty, history, and legend of Ireland and its people.

Each member of the band plays multiple instruments, including wooden flute, accordion, tin whistle, five-string banjo, cittern, bones and more. These instruments complement the lead vocal of Belfast native Richard McMullan and the band's tight four-part harmonies.

Based in Detroit, Blackthorn can usually be found at O'Mara's Pub and Restaurant in Berkley, and their appearances on WJR's St. Patrick's Day show are a Michigan Celtic tradition.

ACS CAN is the nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society that holds lawmakers accountable for their words and their actions. ACS CAN asks that our leaders not only talk about fighting cancer, but take real steps toward decreasing the number of people suffering and dying from cancer.

Tickets for Blackthorn's show cost $20, or $50 for limited special-seating tickets; and doors open at 7 p.m. To purchase tickets, call 734-763-TKTS (8587), or visit, or buy tickets in person at the Michigan Union Ticket Office, The Ark box office, or the Herb David Guitar Studio.