multi-faceted talents as a singer, songwriter, guitarist and raconteur” - Gary Puleo

— The Times Herald, Norristown, PA

Audience Loved Him! James was excellent! He connected with the audience in many ways. Everyone wanted to talk with him after the show. Will book again. Thank you! ” - Kelly Penn, Events Coordinator

Gig Salad

McCarthy's a fixture in the Honolulu arts scene, an established musician, performance artist and educator. ” - Noel Nicholas

Hana Hou

This is one of the most unique musical events I’ve ever been involved with” - Paul Sato

— Jamie Winpenny, Hawaii Independent

Wonderful show for children! By Eleu O. on December 10, 2016I located James thru Gig salad while looking for a performer to come to my son's preschool. He was hired as part of a thank you for the children's participation in a community service project and the show was fantastic!James performed for an hour and the children's attention was captured from the moment he stepped into the room. He told stories, sang songs with various instruments and involved the children throughout his show. There were giggles and squeals of joy as the children danced and participated in the stories. What I appreciated the most was James' expertise with children of all ages and his ability to ensure his material was appropriate for this age group of children ages 3-5.” - Eleu O.

Gig Salad Website

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Previous events

Nothing in Moderation: Tempting Fate at 19

Next Door, 43 North Hotel St., Honolulu

A tale of dreams born and smashed and reborn, celestial hopes fallen and grounded, from crowded jail cells to freezing solitude. I charged the world full on, meeting failure at every turn with many an adventure to show for it. My first one man autobiographical show. Recommended for audiences 18 and up.


Frequent Flights: songs you know spontaneously composed

O'Toole's Irish Pub, 902 Nuuanu Ave., Honolulu, HI


Doolin Rakes: Original Celtic and Rock

Blue Note Hawaii, Outrigger, Honolulu, HI

Join us for our first Blue Note concert. We have crafted an exceptional gathering of our best material for this very special occasion.

$25; $35; $45


Craicpots w/ Lisa Gomes: Wake up Tim Finnegan

O’Toole’s Irish Pub, 902 Nuuanu Ave., Honolulu, HI

Steve and Geoff and I are joined by Lisa Gomes for this quintessentially irish event. Pub Crawl will start at 4:30 at O’Toole’s, head to Murphys, then Fergusons, then JJ Dolans then back to O’Toole’s, all with bagpipes and the corpse of Tim himself, a musical and literary luminary of the highest order.


Celtic Casbah: musical holohol

Chinatown Celtic Casbah, 1109 Maunakea Street Loft 206, Chinatown

We are going to create a chill atmosphere for creative sonic expression and enjoyment.  Myself and whatever musical friends stop by will play the variety of music that emerges from the evening .  Listeners are welcome to take some time to just listen and relax.


James B. McCarthy: Musical Independence

Kelley O'Neil's, 311 lewers St., Honolulu, HI

Yup It Fourth of July. Beaches will be crowded and traffic probably gnarly, so cruise into Kelleys for a fun Pau Hana. I will focus on american tunes (including American Tune, I've Been Everywhere, Born in the USA, etc.)   But there will still be Irish. Always Irish. Right so. come on down.


Celtic, Comedy, Covers and Creative Originals

Kelleys O'Neil's, 311 Lewers St., Honolulu, Hi

Join us for a relaxed atmosphere with great staff, reasonable food and drinks and tunes you can join in with or have a conversation . Hope to see you there.


James McCarthy House Concert

HOUSE CONCERT; personal residence, Kailua; Enchanted Lakes, HI

This house concert is the first of the summer season for me. It is being hosted in Kailua by a fantastic couple. Any one is welcome but must contact me at for invitation and info.


This is a private event for a small gathering

Private Wedding, Hilton, Waikiki, HI


James B. McCarthy: Celtic, Covers and Creative Originals

Kelley O'Neil's, 311 Lewers St., Honolulu, HI

Been playing at Kelley's since they opened.  Bringing you irish tunes to stomp and sing to, comic originals, covers you know and a few surprises. The atmosphere is family friendly and always a hoot.   Come join us.


Solo:Mild to Wild (Creative Celtic, On the spot Originals

O'Tooles' Irish Pub, 902 Nuuanu Ave., Honolulu, HI

This is always a great time. I will be bringing new and familiar tunes and creating some on the spot. Lots of chances to sing and stomp along. Come have a hoot to kick off the summer.


Private event for 150 2-4 year olds

Star of the Sea Preschool End of Year Celebration, Honolulu



A Wake for Mikey

Anna O'Brien's, 2440 So. Beretania, Honolulu, HI

Joining with my bandmates from Doolin Rakes to honor and thank our friend Mike Hilson for his life and being. Bringing a joyful noise for our saddened ohana at the passing of a good man.


An interactive silliness event

Cash's 8th at Casa Blanca, the forested peaks, Hawaii nei

Percussion play, theater games, sing alongs and call and response stories, plus Super Soakers. We let it all out.


Tall Man's Backyard Soiree; hosted by Bill and me

Backyard Concert, Arlington, Mass.

A wonderful opportunity to spend an evening with exceptional people listening to unique music in an outdoor setting.  The night's program will include a wide range of material from historical ballads to improvisational comedy. You should come.  


TrueTone Tuesday

Downbeat Lounge, 42 North Hotel St, Honolulu, HI



Irish songs and Rocking times

Kelley O'Neils, Lewers Street, Waikiki


Celtic and Classic tunes

Kelley O'Neil's, Lewers Street, Waikiki

Back at Kelley's dong Irish classics and requests, originals and acoustic rock standards

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James with Doolin Rakes

the Celtic rock band has become a mainstay in Honolulu...The music may range from an instrumental reel to an acoustic Irish ballad to a rousing traditional drinking song to a rocking Van Morrison cover to a rendition of “Whiskey in a Jar” that would make Thin Lizzy proud. ” - Elizabeth Kieszkowski

Honolulu Star-Advertiser