The Musicians

About the musicians:

Pat Egan is well known as a guitarist and singer in the Irish traditional music scene, both here and overseas. He was a founding member of the Irish traditional bands Chulrua and the Hedge Band. Pat was a nominee for a WAMA award in the category of Folk - Traditional Vocalist every year from from 2010-2015, and the  2013 WAMMIE went to Pat, awarded on February 16, 2014!

 Karin Loya is a well-known cellist in Celtic and other traditional music circles, who now brings her bass fiddle lines and rhythms to The Sound of Sleat.. Known for unique harmony lines and rhythmic and energetic accompaniments, she currently also plays in A Sheep at the Wheel and the Splendid Shilling Consort. She is in-demand for English Country Dance, community theater, and more. Two of Karin’s CDs, Almost Home (2005) with Fynesound, of which she was a long-time member, and A Sheep at the Wheel (2010) were WAMA nominees for Best Traditional Folk Recording.

Robert Mitchell has over  thirty years experience performing extensively throughout the Washington, D.C., Baltimore areas, and nationally, playing the Great Highland Bagpipes,  Scottish Small Pipes, and Border pipes.   Bob performed  twenty years at the Maryland Renaissance Festival as the wandering piper entertaining generations of visitors.  He was also the Director and  Piper Major of Dunloggin Pipes and Drums Band for 25 years.

After moving on from bagpipe band work, Bob toured and recorded with IONA.   He has also performed with Jennifer Cutting's Ocean Orchestra.   Bob brings an extensive repertoire of Scottish, Cape Breton, and Irish tunes to The Sound of Sleat.  

Guest Musicians with The Sound of Sleat. We often include a guest performer. Matt Bell (bohran), Liz Donaldson (piano, accordionn), and Nick Blanton (hammered dulcimer) are among guest musicians who have performed with The Sound of Sleat in the past year.


The Sound of Sleat

Bob Mitchell- small pipes, Border pipes, whistle

Pat Egan- Vocals, guitars

Karin Loya- cello

The Sound of Sleat bio

"The Sound of Sleat:  Traditional music distilled from the Highlands, islands, and beyond"

We are "the other sound"!  (An AUDIO sound) 

We are "the other spelling"  (SLEAT, not SLEET)



The sound of the rich blend of ancient instruments in these musicians’ hands, with their original and imaginative interpretations of traditional Irish and Scottish tunes and songs, captures the vibrancy, subtlety, and excitement of Celtic music, reawakening the Celtic spirit in each listener.



The Sound of Sleat is a pipe- centric Celtic quartet comprised of Scottish small pipes, cello, vocals and guitar.  This talented group of musicians present a unique blend of instruments, which captures the vibrancy as well as the subtlety of Scottish and Irish pipe music.  The group offers a versatile program bringing in contrasting vocals with soulful cello accompaniment and other combinations of instruments.  The Border pipes as well as a variety of chanters add flare and excitement to the program, and other invited musicians bring new textures with piano, hammered dulcimer, fiddle, or bodhran.



"Sleat" takes its name from the peninsula on the Isle of Skye.  The "Sound of Sleat"  refers to the body of water between the Isle of Skye and the Scottish Highlands.  Sleat, (pronounced like "peat") which in Scottish Gaelic means "smooth", is very fitting for this new, great -sounding band. Their signature tune is the reel, "The Sound of Sleat".



The musicians are all seasoned professionals, who bring together a blend of  Scottish and Irish traditional tunes and songs.  In addition to ancient Scottish piping classics and rarities, their repertoire includes tunes and sets from Cape Breton and contemporary composers.  The dynamic range and variety of moods of their instruments is unexpectedly broad and rich.   "The music has a maturity behind it", says J. Hurley. The music ranges from soulful airs to dance tunes, from war and peace, to the local pub and beyond.  


         On January 9, 2014 The Sound of Sleat started off the new year with a nearly sold-out show at Baldwin's Station in Sykesville, MD.


         On December 31, 2014 and December 31, 2015, The Sound of Sleat ended the year performing at the Lyceum in Old Town Alexandria, as part of the 20th and 21st anniversary celebrations of First Night Alexandria, Virginia, to a full house throughout the evening. And that's how The Sound of Sleat greeted the new year, now two years in a row! Join us December 31, 2016 for FNA 2016! We will perform 4 shows on the hour from 7 pm on at Long and Foster, 400 King Street in the heart of Old Town Alexandria.