Mikkel and David

Mik & Dave at the Avanova Performance Space in Oakland, Ca. 2009
Below: Morgan in Chico, Ca. 2012


What they're saying about Beltain

Beltain performs original and traditional ballads and dances. Their traditional repertoire includes 14th century chansons and English and Celtic songs and dances set to a rollicking beat. Close harmonies and interesting instruments, as well as compelling original songs, will charm and entertain you.

- Paradise Center For Tolerance And Non-Violence, June 2013

Blending 11th-century folk and elements of ’60s pop, Beltain sounds like Frank Zappa playing during Medieval Times. Mandolin, pan flute and accordion are the instruments of choice, but the dark harmonies of Dave Cowan and Morgan and Mikkel McDow steal the show. They wield a mean jousting lance, too.

- The Chico News And Review, April 2012

For the few among you who may not be familiar with Beltain, the co-founders are (Susan) Morgan (Cyderman's Fancy, Pipe & Bowl Morris) & Mik McDow (The Jars, Alliance), joined by one-man ethnic orchestra Dave Cowan (Ruby Hollow, Willowgreen). Think tight, dramatic vocals carried on waves of guitar, octave mando, accordion, panpipes, electric bass and bodhran and a repertoire that moves between 16th century great halls and 20th century Nashville with grace and conviction.

- Tom Wagner, Oak Ash & Thorn, January 2011

Every time the three broke into harmony, a beautiful hum projected through the room, giving listeners chills. The band's powerful vocals, mostly lead by Morgan McDow, complimented every composition...It was a night of call and response as Beltain included their audience in many songs. Anyone passing by would think Cafe Coda was an Irish pub.

- The Orion, California State University at Chico, January 2011