fiddler'Rosin the Bow'

A Celtic Music Group

letter Rosin the Bow is a Irish Celtic and British traditional music group comprising Alan Keith, Ernest Kinsolving, and Karl Franzen.

The melodies and songs presented by them have been gathered from the traditional sources of such countries and regions as Ireland, Scotland, Northumberland, England, Wales, Canada and the United States. The tunes played include a mixture of Irish jigs, reels, slides, polkas, planxtys and airs, Northumbrian rants, rounds and hornpipes, Scottish marches and strathspeys, English Morris and country dance tunes, British and French Canadian country dances and American hoedowns. The songs are about the usual subjects of love, rejection, war, brawling, drinking and dancing.

The instruments used in the arraingements are grouped according to the region in which they might be traditionally played, and can include fiddle, tin whistles, melodian (diatonic button accordion), Scottish Highland and Border bagpipes, acoustic guitar and mandocello (cittern/English guitar). Percussion instruments include the bodran (Irish frame drum) and bones.

Group photo

The Members (as pictured from l-r)

Alan Keith - accordion, tin whisle, bodran and bones.
Alan has been playing music since grade school and professionally since high school. With over 35 years of folk and traditional music experience, Alan has collected, built and learned to play in excess of 30 instruments. Alan has either lead or been a member of over twenty different folk ensembles. He is presently a member of three groups and performs numerous solo engagements as well. Alan is a featured band member on Le Soleil's recordings Le Soleil and Bal Folk en Californie, and on Tour de France's Music of the French Provinces. He can also be heard on French Creek's Fait en Californie CD. (See Recordings For Sale for offerings and further information.)

Ernest Kinsolving - fiddle, tin whistle, bodran and vocals.
Ernest has been active in the Bay Area music scene since his days with Four Shillings Short in the mid-1980s. In addition to his lovely "Irish tenor" voice, Ernest plays Irish and American music on fiddle, tin whistle and bodhran. He continues to be a prominent member of local groups including Rosin the Bow, Harmon's Peak, Mr. Barky and Biddy Early's Bottle, and has contributed instrumental and vocal tracks to recordings by Harmon's Peak, Kingsbard, Elisa Welch, Broceliande and others.

Karl Franzen - guitar, mandocello, tin whisle, accordion, bodran and vocals.
Karl became interested in music growing up in rural Massachusetts. He taught himself harmonica at age eight and learned guitar from singing nuns - thereafter singing and playing for folk-masses and with friends. Influenced by recordings of the Newport Folk Festivals, Karl then studied guitar with East Coast guitarist Phil Cooper. While in college, he began playing Irish music and taught himself mandolin. Karl continued with folk music in California, learning to play a number of other instruments. He has performed with Broceliande, Four Shillings Short, Nancy Cassidy and Gary Britebart. In addition to Rosin the Bow, Karl currently plays and sings with Harmon's Peak, Luceo, Mr. Barky and Slainte. As well as having added his wonderful baratone voice and instrumental skills to a number of recordings, Karl currently teaches music to kids and does web site and graphic design.

Note: A performance by Rosin the Bow can also include Irish step dancing. Dancers can perform a number of traditonal Irish dances such as the reel, jig, slip jig, hornpipe and special set dances. (For a photo of a recent performance with a step dancer, click here). A dance teacher to teach Irish Celeidh (party) dances to the public is also generally available. Be sure to specify if you wish these additional services.

Recent Notable Public Performances

Booking Information

For booking and information about music guaranteed to keep your toes tappin', contact Alan by email (use the 'Contact' button on the navigation table below, or go to Alan's 'Home' Page for address),
telephone Alan at: (650) 391-5546 (Normal hours U.S. Pacific Time)

left hand

Back to Alan's Biography

 About Alan  Alan's Performing Groups  Services  Keithmusic Products  General Interest  Home  Contact

last update: 1/24/13