This month I’ve been on a mini Northern Irish tour.
It’s been fantastic to be back home playing gigs with Edelle McMahon, a songwriter and seasoned performed whom I really admire. Edelle and I will be playing more N.I dates as the Dark Ballantines in the very near future.
Our first gig was at 20:20 @ the Oh Yeah Centre, Belfast. This gig raises money for the charity WaterAid, and is run by legendary local musician, Rory Nellis. We were performing alongside two fantastic acts. Brand new synthwave duo Danny Madigan had me dancing away in my seat. Frontman, and Radio Ulster broadcaster Steven Rainey provided some very slick bass licks, and was kept us entertained between tunes with witty banter. Also full of the craic was Nathan O’Regan, an incredible songwriter with a beautiful voice who is one half of comedy podcast pairing, Mad Notions, along with Mick McCullagh (Son of the Hound). 20:20 runs once a month and is a real treat for music lovers. The venue is roomy, but still feels intimate and relaxed, well worth getting down to and all goes towards a great cause.
Our second gig of the week was at the the fabulous Fealty’s Back Bar Sessions, Bangor. The place was packed, and we had an absolute whale of a time playing tunes in the round with Stephen Macartney (King Cedar). Stephen runs a fantastic night there every Saturday night where singer-songwriters perform their own tunes with no cover charge. It really is a gift and I would encourage any and all music lovers to head down there. I’ve played lots of venues, big and small, but Fealty’s is my favourite venue hands down. There’s just something so cosy and welcoming about the place, it always feels like coming home. If you’re out looking for craic, you’ll find it here
Finally, I’m excited to be recording some of the new tunes I debuted this week. I’ll be heading into the studio at Southampton Solent University next month to record a brand new EP with Abbie Hill and the crew, and I can’t wait!
Check out my Youtube page for videos I recorded there a few months back…
[Feature header photo by Stephen Macartney]