They perform a unique style of music combining Scottish and Irish folk songs with music inspired by the Lord of the Rings, performed on non-traditional instruments--autoharp, recorder, and mandolin.
In just five years, the've completed eight studio albums and performed coast-to-coast. Ask their fans, and they'll tell you The Bards are just plain fun! Which makes sense since, after all, they just love the music. Yet The Bards, sometimes called the hardest working band in Celtic music around their hometown in Austin, are accomplished musicians and entrepreneurs who not long ago headlined at the Oscar party for Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.
It started small, though not inauspiciously, wearing kilts on campus at the University of Texas. Marc Gunn and partner Andrew McKee developed a loyal following with weekly performances on campus. This quickly led to gigs at renaissance faires, science fiction conventions, and Celtic music festivals as well as parties and weddings for the pair.
With the Bards calendar busy, they began producing the duos recordings. Their first effort in 1999 was Marked By Great Size followed by Gullible's Travels in 2000. The third release was 2001s instrumental Songs of the Muse, then two theme CDs A Faire To Remember and A Celtic Renaissance Wedding. 2002 saw the release of Songs of Ireland and in 2003, Memories of Middle Earth. A long-awaited album, Brobdingnagian Fairy Tales, brought The Bards accolades in 2005 when it became the #1 Top-Selling CD on CDBaby, the most-popular independent music retailer on the internet.
All that hard work and effort has hardly gone unnoticed. Fans have downloaded more than six million MP3s from him; over one million of those were for the hugely popular Tolkien (The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings). The Brobdingnagian Bards were voted Best Renaissance Men in the Austin Chronicle's 2003 Best of Austin poll. In March of 2005, The Bards collected an Austin Music Award for the band as Best Novelty Band, the first time any Celtic band has won. Gunns solo CD Soul of a Harper won the Best Cover Art category that year.
In a town famous for almost every musical genre except Celtic music, the Brobdingnagian Bards have raised the bar and held it high. Using the musical past and vivid imaginations bolstered with ambition and drive, they blaze trails from terra firma to cyberspace, encouraging others to follow.