Seán Earnest

Celtic Guitar & Bouzouki

Seán Earnest is a performer, recording artist, and educator specialising in the music of Ireland and the British Isles.  He plays acoustic guitar & bouzouki, and is based in the Catskill Mountains of New York.

About Seán

Guitarist and bouzouki player Seán Earnest's empathetic and eclectic musical stylings have taken him far from his native central Pennsylvania.  Having cut his musical teeth in the Irish music sessions of New York City, Seán honed his guitar and bouzouki craft while studying  at the University of Limerick's Irish World Academy of Music & Dance.  He is among the most sought-after American Celtic musicians today and performs regularly throughout North America and beyond with the Irish group Téada, the Paul McKenna Band from Glasgow, and his own band The Yanks, with whom he has toured Ireland and released two albums to great critical acclaim.

Seán has worked with a number of vocalists including Cathie Ryan, Colleen Raney, and Kyle Carey, as well as the international touring troupes Women of Ireland and Atlantic Steps. He features on recordings by Clare accordion and fiddle player Damien Connolly as well as flautist Laura Byrne.

In addition to teaching privately, Seán is a frequent faculty instructor at Irish music camps including the Catskills Irish Arts Week, the Augusta Irish Week, and the O'Flaherty Retreat.  He has conducted workshops and seminars at festivals throughout the United States and has also taught internationally, both in Ireland as well as the Goderich Celtic Roots Festival's Celtic College in Goderich, Ontario.


Seán is very fortunate to hold 'endorsed artist' relationships with the following:

Davy Stuart | luthier

I have long been a fan of Davy’s work, having seen and played several of his instruments owned by my friends Brian Miller and Donal Clancy. In the summer of 2015 I contacted Davy to order a 10-string long scale cittern in Italian Spruce and Indian Rosewood with Bubinga trim. I took delivery in autumn of 2015 just in time for the O’Flaherty Retreat outside Dallas. Despite having travelled from New Zealand to Texas, the instrument sounded rich and powerful straight out of the case. From start to finish Davy was a treat to work with and an absolute gentleman. His attention to detail is evident throughout the instrument, especially in the fretwork and fine trim job. I amplify this instrument live with a passive K&K Pure Mini pickup system and L.R. Baggs Para Acoustic DI.
— S.E.

John Pearse Strings | musicial instrument string & accessory manufacturer

I remember first trying John Pearse strings as a teenager at the recommendation of several older, more experienced players. Since then John Pearse has come to represent the height of quality in acoustic instrument strings for me. This relationship is personal for me because the company is based in my home state of Pennsylvania and their founder, John Pearse himself, shared many of my hobbies including the culinary arts as well as fly fishing.
— S.E.


Seán's main guitar these days is an Eastman E20OM, an orchestra model in Adirondack Spruce & Indian Rosewood.  Seán believes Eastman represents incredible value and isn't ashamed to admit the Eastman replaced his old Martin D-18!  Amplification is achieved with an Audio-Technica ATM350 miniature condenser microphone mounted externally to the soundhole by means of a padded clip.

Seán uses capos by Shubb and G7; plectrums by Blue Chip, Wegen, and Dunlop; StroboClip tuner by Petersen; and instrument leads by Monster.

© Sean Earnest Music 2016