Liam Kelly is a native of Sligo and a founding member of the band. He began playing traditional Irish music at a very young age, born into a musical family. He started on the accordion but later switched to the whistle and in turn the flute, mainly learning from local player Carmel Gunning. He is a veteran of many competitions, where he met Shane Mitchell. This friendship lead to Poitin, a traditional group they formed while still at school. The level of success and media attention this group received was remarkable, including several TV and radio appearances and success in many competitions. Major concerts and tours were offered on the strength of their performances, but exam pressures and their young ages prevented them from capitalizing on their success. Liam's role in the band is a central one, as Dervish's core sound revolves around the tight and intuitive interplay between Flute, Accordion and Fiddle. In 2009 Liam released a solo album called Sweetwood to celebrate 20 years in Dervish, which features Michael Holmes on the Bouzouki and Donnchadh Gough on the Bodhran. Sweetwood is reviewed in the Irish Times here.