Conor Wrafter


Press Release via AS Written, November 2022


A young midlands musician has been hailed as “one of Ireland’s finest banjo players” by no less than the band WeBanjo3

CONOR WRAFTER, already well used to the spotlight as a member of the hugely popular WRAFTER FAMILY BAND, was one of just three winners chosen to perform with WeBanjo3 on stage during their concert at Leisureland in Galway last weekend. 

          The competition, organised by the Galway band together with the Galway Advertiser, was open to entries from all over Ireland, and saw Conor hand-picked to perform with the band, alongside fellow winners, Galway girls Melissa Clarke on accordion and Nicole McLaughlin on concertina. In welcoming the trio on stage, the band declared to a full house that  while Britain’s got talent, and America’s got talent, Ireland has the best talent, as they found during their search. 

          Kilbeggan man Conor, who was introduced on stage by WeBanjo3‘s Enda Scahill, was hailed as “one of Ireland’s finest banjo players”, with Enda also remarking that the band had searched all over Ireland to find him. 

          WeBanjo3 is composed of two sets of brothers, Enda and Fergal Scahill, and Martin and David Howley. They play a blend of traditional Irish, ‘old-time’, and bluegrass music which they have often referred to as Celtgrass. The prestigious Wall Street Journal once described the band’s playing as a “freshness and finesse bordering on the magical”.


Despite his youth, seventeen year old Conor can already look back on several television performances, including The Late Late Show, and TG4’s Realta Agus Gaolta (in which the Wrafter’s were finalists in 2019). Conor and company have also opened for Nathan Carter, Finbar Furey, Johnny McEvoy, George Murphy, The Fureys, The Three Tenors (Ireland), and for The High Kings on no less than three occasions. Conor and his family have also performed in Leinster House twice, for the Ceann Comhairle’s annual fundraiser for Trócaire, and even taken their talents to the hallowed ground of the GPO in Dublin. Conor and the rest of the Wrafter clan have twice been guests of Eurovision winner Charlie McGettigan on his popular Saturday morning radio show, and have taken to the main-stage at events of national prominence such as the Ploughing Championships and the Tullamore Show.

          A moment of personal recognition that stands out for Conor, occurred in the summer of 2018 when the Wrafters were on holiday in Clifden. They found themselves in the company of triple Oscar winner Daniel Day Lewis when he and his wife, the playwright Rebecca Miller (daughter of American novelist Arthur Miller, who was once married to Marilyn Monroe) sat in on an impromptu session the Wrafters played in Griffith’s Bar. Afterwards, Rebecca was even kind enough to tell Conor he was the best banjo player she had ever heard. A clip of Conor playing The Mason’s Apron that day has since been viewed over 375,000 times on the bar’s Facebook page. 

          In 2019, the Wrafters released and launched their debut EP, called The First Verse, with two sold-out shows at the Tuar Ard Arts Centre in Moate, and with Conor’s banjo playing featured on all four tracks of that record. And, in news that will delight fans of the family, they’ve been back in the studio again recently, with new music now in the works. 

          Conor joined WeBanjo3 for two tunes in Galway – Cooley’s Reel and The Mason’s Apron – but for anyone looking to experience his superb playing first-hand, there’s a brilliant opportunity to do just that coming up very soon. Conor and The Wrafter Family Band will perform a fundraising concert in aid of Ballaghmore Parish at the Racket Hall Hotel in Roscrea on December 3rd. Tickets for that event are on-sale now, with full details available on the The Wrafter Family Band Facebook page and Instagram account.

          The Wrafter Family Band will also be joining Kevin Lalor Fitzpatrick on his Saturday Night Show on Midlands 103 for a song and a chat on November 12th. 

~ Tickets for THE WRAFTER FAMILY BAND ‘LIVE’ IN CONCERT at the RACKET HALL HOTEL, Roscrea, on December 3rd, are ON-SALE NOW. Full details available on the band’s official Facebook page and Instagram account (The Wrafter Family Band).


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