It's a long way to Tipperary but not for our banjo player Noel Cotter. Noel started playing the Irish traditional 4 string tenor banjo when he was 11 years old. Noel was lucky to be taught by world famous button Accordion player Bobby Gardiner.
Noel soon became an accomplished player and with a lightening fast right hand the hardest of tunes seemed to flow from his banjo with ease.
Noel joined his local branch of comhaltas and was soon playing in sessions with accomplished musicians and this gave him his solid background in traditional Irish music.
Together with his father and his brother they formed a family band and they were soon playing in pubs and hotels around Tipperary. This was a major stepping stone in Noel's career as it gave him the professionalism and confidence to do bigger and better things.
Noel finished his studies at St Joseph's college in his home town of Cahir in 1994 and moved to Northampton for the next chapter of his musical career. He joined local band Streams Of Whiskey and enjoyed six years of playing the length and breath of the UK supporting major acts like the Wolfetones , Dublin city Ramblers,Ronnie Dew and many more.
Noel moved back to Tipperary in 2000 where he continued to play on a regular basis with well know singer songwriter Mike Walsh.
The desire to play again in the UK with an established band was always on his mind and when the phone call from Donnybrook fair came it was an offer he could not refuse.
Noel joined the band on a full time contract in 2011 and continues to play to the highest level with the band while touring the UK and Ireland.
"It is very comforting", says Noel, "to find yourself as a musician playing in a band that are committed to providing the highest level of entertainment and extremely professional too. Long may it last. Rock on Donnybrook!"