February 23rd – 25th, 2017

The Chief Francis O’Neill Irish Music Festival held annually in Tiburon was created to honor my great uncle, Francis O?Neill, who the Irish government recognizes as The Man Who Saved Irish Music. Francis left Ireland, penniless, at the age of 16, in 1864. After 6 years of amazing worldwide adventures he settled in Chicago in 1870 and became a policeman. By 1891 he rose to become the Police Chief of Chicago, the second largest police department in the US. Realizing that Irish music was unwritten and was being lost as Irish immigrants became Americanized he spent his adult life collecting Irish tunes, converting them to sheet music and publishing eight books of Irish music and culture. He collected and saved over 3500 tunes. To this day, in 2017, his books of Irish music are the holy grail to Irish musicians around the world. His book collection of music and Irish culture are now housed at Norte Dame University.

Each year in my family?s home town of Bantry, Ireland a music festival takes place celebrating Chief Francis and his achievements. Our festival is patterned after the Bantry festival in format and purpose. Even our town of Tiburon California is strikingly similar in that it is a small town located on a large bay, surrounded by low mountains and facing Western rolling seas. This is an annual festival taking place the last weekend of February and is a fund raising event. This year?s festival will feature the finest bay area Irish musicians and will feature the internationally acclaimed Irish bands, The Black Brothers and Lucie Comnes and her Irish Rockn’ Band.

Thank you for your support,
Tom O’Neill



The Spratling Family
The O’Neill Family
Tiburon Peninsula Foundation
The Republic of Ireland


The Singh Family
Tiburon Chamber of Commerce


The Lauber Family
Charles Property Services
Winifred & Harry B. Allen Foundation
Servino Ristorante
Sam’s Anchor Cafe


The Seigler Family
The McWhinney Family
Salt & Pepper
Tiburon Wine Shop
Schoenberg Guitars
Teeling Whiskey


Tom O’Neill

Eric Schoenberg and I as directors of the Chief Francis O’Neill Irish Music Festival, wish to give sincere thanks to the sponsors of this year’s event. Without the help of these generous friends we could not run this exciting Irish music event in as complete a way as we are doing. This year’s festival is a three night event, February 23, 24 & 25, 2017