Illegal Downloading – Good or Bad for Musicians?

The subject of illegally downloading albums is a very thorny one – and musicians aren’t slow to speak out about it. But what irks some people is that those who speak out loudest against downloading – Metallica, Lily Allen, for example – tend to be the very people who can live comfortably on money they’ve already made from their fans. Or else they’re working for major record companies, and definitely won’t have to turn to panhandling any time soon. Often the people speaking out for illegal downloading are independent musicians, ironically the people who make little to no money from … Continue reading Illegal Downloading – Good or Bad for Musicians?

A Fire to Scare the Sun

Fans of modern Irish folk music and gin-supping troubadours would be well advised to check out the new album by Declan de Barra, which is called ‘ A Fire to Scare the Sun’. Declan’s plaintive vocals lead all the tracks, with the music – though cinematic – kept at just the right level in the mix. The album features guest musicians Brian Hogan from Kila, Cora Venus Lunny, James Dunne from the RTE Symphony Orchestra and cellist Mary Barnecutt, so Declan’s in very good company. Declan’s bio is quite the read – he nearly lost his arm at a KISS … Continue reading A Fire to Scare the Sun

John Vanderslice

I met my new neighbor Had a drink on her veranda And watched the ocean batter Bonita Point “Do you have any children?” Air around us changed As grief washed across her face White dove, white dove White dove, white dove What are you thinking of? We had a daughter Disappeared at eight We gave them money All we could do was wait She’s found Garroted, bound White dove, white dove White dove, white dove What are you thinking of? Don’t come around here no more It’s not about mercy Not about tears anymore White dove, white dove What are … Continue reading John Vanderslice

Moonshine Travellers at the Sugar Club

If you’ve ever wanted an insight into the world of the roadie – that strange, denim-clad creature that skulks about on stage while you’re waiting for your favourite band to perform – then head along to see the Moonshine Travellers when it hits the Sugar Club in Dublin this week. It’s written by a young guy called Patrick McCarry, and some of you may have already seen it at the Electric Picnic a few weekends back. I have an interview with Patrick on State which goes into a lot more detail about the show – but suffice to say it’s … Continue reading Moonshine Travellers at the Sugar Club

Goodtime John – new EP for free download

Goodtime John is back – and he has a new EP that he’s kindly made available for free download here. Here’s what he has to say about it: “The songs on this EP were recorded by Phil Elverum in the Department of Safety in Anacortes, WA at the end of the summer of 2007. In between a ferocious table tennis tournament and a lot of lake swimming we got 11 songs recorded. The songs available here are the ones I think work best. The idea I had was to have a really loose and raw feel to the songs and … Continue reading Goodtime John – new EP for free download

The Second Coming of Black Sun

Some of you may remember that back in May of this year, I wrote a blog post on a new music night in Cork called Black Sun. I had high hopes for the success of the gig, which was organised by a dear friend of mine, Vicky Langan, a musician, mum, curator and artistic soul who had spent many months organising the event. I was blown away on the night of the gig (which was held in the Granary Theatre) when it sold out within about 30 minutes, and I could really sense that something special was in the air … Continue reading The Second Coming of Black Sun