Eamon McLoughlin is a British musician who plays fiddle, viola, mandolin and cello, and was a founding member of the American bluegrass band The Greencards. He currently lives and works in Nashville, Tennessee as a freelance session musician, and performing live with MCA Recording Artist Josh Turner. He has appeared as a session musician for acts including Kim Richey, Robert Earl Keen, Caroline Herring and Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Matthew Perryman Jones, Matthew Ryan and others.
Raised in South London, McLoughlin began to perform country music shows with his family on weekends, influenced by George Jones, George Strait and Ricky Skaggs. Born to Irish parents, McLoughlin's father was head of a London-based country band. At age nine, McLoughlin moved away from piano lessons to play fiddle, and performed with his father's band. McLoughlin had earlier relocated from London to Austin in 1997, after leaving college with a degree in Politics and American Studies. McLoughlin also toured with the Asylum St. Spankers, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Bruce Robison, Kelly Willis and the Austin Lounge Lizards after arriving in the United States.
McLoughlin met Kym Warner, at a recording session. Warner was producing an album for the recording artist Aaron Watson, and found they needed a fiddle player, which led to the recruitment of McLoughlin. Initially the immigrants got to know one another through their mutual love of Monty Python, Benny Hill, and Fawlty Towers. They began to have jam sessions afterwards, and according to Warner, there was evident chemistry between the trio, which led to their writing songs together. They eventually began to perform shows locally in Austin to finance the recording of what would become their debut album, 2003's Movin' On. In the process, they became one of the most popular musical groups in Austin. Representative of an emerging "newgrass" movement, The Greencards' acoustic sound was said to incorporate eclectic influences from Irish traditional, European gypsy, and Latin American sources.
Their first performance together as a band was at the Austin Irish pub, Mother Egan's. Given a noon to 3 pm time slot, they surprisingly began to fill the pub with patrons week after week, with fans there calling them the "Bluegrass Bunch". Several months later, The Greencards began performing an additional three to five times per week in Austin, in addition to their Mother Egan's Sunday show. Warner credited the frantic pace of their performance schedule during their Austin formation for their cohesion as a group and for driving them to create more new original music. During their time performing locally in Austin, they toured with various local Texas musicians, including Robert Earl Keen.
The lyrics on "When I Was in Love With You" were cited as among the most striking on Viridian, the Greencards's 2007 release, and were based in part by McLoughlin on an 1896 poem, "A Shropshire Lad", by Alfred Edward Housman, the English poet. The song was described as a "Pogues-like romp."
Eamon McLoughlin is a regular blogger for Country Music Television. After the 50th Grammy Awards, where The Greencards were nominated, he wrote about the band's experience at the event.
On 1 December 2009, McLoughlin announced his departure from The Greencards to pursue other musical challenges. In the Autumn of 2010 he began working for MCA Recording Artist Josh Turner, playing fiddle, mandolin and singing principal harmony vocals.