So given the reviewing nature of my last two weeks, (basically attending a bucket-load of West End shows in London) I have been promoted to Reviewer on trip advisor randomly. This review, as its title suggests, concerns Ireland, artists, musicians and the beauty of their craft. To begin, Ireland is a funny place, we all know this – A friend of mine was born there and I have toured their with him many times. Each time I go there, I feel this warm aura of passion in culture. He gets wound up about the stupidest of things and values respect more than financial support. They all bloody do. I was born in an amusement park called Efteling in Holland so i don’t understand this at all but If you ask any Irish person what they are most proud of about Ireland, they will undoubtedly say ‘it’s History and it’s Cultural Heritage and Art’.
One must only look to the global superstars of everything artistic and an Irish first-generation name will appear close to the top of its hierarchy. (Day Lewis, Beckett, Wilde, U2, Joyce, Sheridan, Abrahamson, Binchy, Neeson, Yeats’, Clarke, Henry, Horan, Fassbender, Farrell, McIlroy, Riverdancers, O’Connell, Collins, Celtic Woman, Kelvin, JFK, Gleesons. Sheeran, Best etc etc etc and my etc’s could go on for quite a long time. My point is Ireland is built on music and words and art and stories and appreciation of artistic skill as well as an underdog ambition and passion. They still cheer like wild animals at a Christie Moore song about a 1988 goal scored by Ray Houghten against England. They still dance like crazed lunatics at a remix of a song called Maniac 2000 by Mark McCabe. They still passionately raise their glasses to a departing person at a bar with a rendition of Willie Clancy’s The Parting Glass just because he is leaving the pub for the night. They are crazy! But it is precisely this passion that resonates with the passionate world of the arts. These songs and events are etched into an Irish persons heart and they physically do not understand why every other nationality hasn’t heard of these timeless classics or values finance over love.
Their tradition dates back long before electricity or even published materials it is ingrained in the soul of the country. The land of saints and scholars with a poet as the president, who don’t know what to do with a bob in their pocket (they mostly buy boats and five houses) but who know exactly which chord progression works for a sesh.
To be brief, as my title suggests, here is a list of my own top five emerging artists in the music scene in the small island of five million people and proof that Ireland is only getting stronger in this area. Here are the choices in no particular order:
1) Hermitage Green: This beautiful boy band from Limerick City is made of sheer talent. Giving Kodaline and the Villagers a run for their money for top spot in Ireland at the moment, the lads have toured quite a lot internationally recently and have dedicated the last three years to making a go of it in miserable conditions and grinding out their skill level similar to the Beatles in Hamburg. This early video from 2011 (which includes Felix Jones and doesn’t include Dermot Sheedy) represents the sheer skill level of the band as they were beginning and they have gone from strength to strength. They are really good guys too. We can only see success for the band provided they remain humble and hard working:
2) KarmaCloud: one member of the band is a straight up Dublin gangsta, who has previously played in places unknown to many. Dan Forde (Sigfreid) and his band Karmacloud all studied in Berkeley school of music in Boston together to get their Masters’ and they are just so impressive live and on track that it is impossible to see them not becoming massive should they want it. They do everything right, it is perfectionism at its highest and in six months they may choose if they want to be global superstars or not. Their level of talent and skill as a three-piece ensemble is second to none in Ireland: http://leakysync.com/karmacloud/
3) Loah – This amazingly talented Dublin singer has been developing her music since she was born and one only has to see her perform to realise she was made to sing as she does and in the way that she does. The amount of hours she has dedicated to perfecting her craft is astonishing and we wish her the very best here at TPJ. Anyone who hassles her will have a little Tiger and many friends to deal with but her music is so soft and catchy, we love it. I presume she is playing the big Irish festivals this year so we may see her. If she is not, it’s a tragedy:
4) I Have A Tribe: Pats is a gentleman. Everyone knows this. He is a brilliant musician. Everyone knows this also. Nuff said really. Everyone who loves beards will love him…and that is everyone I think. Keep doing what you’re doing man, it’s magic:
5) Slow Skies: Karen Sheridan and her band Slow Skies have worked effortlessly over the past three years together to develop their completely unique sound. With influences such like Regina Spektor, Duffy, Queen and maybe Bjork and a talent that was developed into a skill with schooling, they have found a lovely niche in the market where they fit into perfectly. We wanna see more stuff soon please, TPJ x :
Here are our top 5 picks for the Irish 2014/15 season. 2013 was certainly the year of Hozier, McMorrow, Kodaline and Gavin James. Here are our suggestions for 2014/15. There were many many other contenders for consideration such as prodigies like Daithi, The Strypes, Ham Sandwich, Big September, Rogues, Laura Hughes and Laura Feeney etc etc etc. There are too many etc’s to mention them all. One thing is for sure, the future of Irish music is alive and well and thank you for making our economy better with beautiful music. One cannot underestimate the power of music on the psychology of a nation. Please feel free to suggest, comment or constructively criticise my humble choices and opinion. They are only the opinions of a little teddy Tiger bear so mock, share or discuss at will. All expression is welcome no matter how bad your taste in music is. Beliebers sometimes welcome!
All my Love, TPJ x