Entertainment & Arts

Clannad to be awarded lifetime achievement honour

Clannad Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Clannad have sold an estimated 15 million records worldwide

Irish band Clannad are to be presented with a lifetime achievement accolade at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards.

The family act, who made their debut in 1973, said they were "absolutely honoured" to be recognised.

Folk singer Martin Carthy, who has been performing for 50 years and recorded more than 40 albums, will also be given a special award.

The awards, marking their 15th anniversary, will be held at London's Royal Albert Hall on 19 February.

Clannad, which comprises siblings Moya, Ciaran and Pol Brennan and their twin uncles Noel and Padraig, shot to fame with their theme to TV drama Harry's Game in 1982.

Their younger sister was recruited to the band in the late 1970s and went on to have an internationally successful career as solo star Enya.

"We are really looking forward to being part of the big night at the Royal Albert Hall," added the band, who will also perform at the awards ceremony.

Their previous accolades include a Grammy for the best new age album in 1999, while they won a career achievement honour at the Ireland's Meteor Awards in 2007.

Image caption Martin Carthy forms part of a folk music dynasty

Carthy said: "I've just been lucky enough to follow my heart and pretty much do what I want over the past 50 years or so.

His wife Norma Waterson and daughter Eliza are also well-known and respected folk musicians.

"If, along the way, I've been able to play a part, however small, in keeping the traditional music of these islands alive, then I consider myself a fortunate man," added the 72-year-old.

Carthy has won four folk awards at previous ceremonies, including folk singer of the year in 2002 and 2005.

Bob Shennan, the controller of Radio 2 and BBC 6Music, said: "Clannad and Martin Carthy have made magnificent contributions to folk music over the years and are thoroughly deserving of these prestigious accolades."

The full nominations for this year's event have also been announced, across nine categories.

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