After 5 years in Dublin Avery LeVine had hit a wall; recognized as one of many excellent emerging traditional Irish music players on the local scene he still couldn’t make ends meet playing music full-time. With an impending visa expiration date and no legal options to extend his stay, Avery decided it was time to head back home to Portland, OR. Frustrated by the inability to achieve the dream of playing Irish trad full-time in Ireland, Avery decided to re-visit another, longer standing dream: songwriting. See, Avery has always loved music, from strumming on his mom’s old guitar as a toddler and writing song lyrics in his head during elementary school recesses to playing bassoon in the school band and his teenage years playing bass in puck rock bands. It was this teenage foray into punk that led him into Irish trad music. It wasn’t long before teenage Avery was more interested in playing his new tin whistle and mandolin than bass and bassoon. Whistle and mandolin led to Irish flute and bouzouki and eventually DADGAD guitar as well.
At 18 Avery moved to Dublin to attend the Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT) where he studied with Irish music luminaries taking flute lessons from Tom Doorley (Danú), and Peter Browne (1691) and mandolin lessons with Kieran Hanrahan (Stockton’s Wing). He graduated with a BMus Hons in Irish Traditional Music Studies in 2011. Just before venturing to Dublin Avery began to sing folk songs; while he started with Irish and other English language ballads it wasn’t long before homesickness in Dublin led him to an interest in American folk songs. Through-out all these years Avery had, at times, tried to write his own songs but was never happy with the results. So, when the future seemed bleak for an Irish trad musician, Avery took a notebook out to one of his favorite parks in Dublin, Herbert Park, and free-wrote what came to mind. The results finally satisfied Avery and he found new direction as a songwriter.
“Burnt out from nights out
I arose from the ashes/
As a writer of doubt”
– Avery LeVine
Since moving back to Portland Avery has spent time honing his craft as a songwriter and getting to know the local Irish trad scene. He spent 2 years playing with local Celtic trio Dram & Go who released their debut EP in late 2015 and decided to part ways with the band in mid-2016 to pursue his solo work. On April 28, 2017 Avery released his debut solo EP Lonesome City, which is a featured album on Celtic Radio Network, it highlights his abilities as a singer/songwriter, interpreter of folk songs, and instrumentalist. As a solo artist Avery has shared the stage with 2016 winner of NPR’s Tiny Desk Contest Gaelynn Lea. In addition to performing solo; you can also find Avery playing sessions around Portland and occasionally doing gigs with musicians/groups such as Felim Egan, the Stomptowners, Bob Soper, Tim Cornell, members of Ná Rósaí, and many others! Visit the events page to see where he is playing next and sign up for the mailing list below to stay up to date.