The Great Northern Song Book's top ten songs
Ash- Shining Light sung by The Answer
Divine Comedy - Tonight we Fly performed by General Fiasco
Duke Special- Freewheel sung by Bronagh Gallagher
David McWilliams - Days of Pearly Spencer perfomed by Katharine Philippa
Stiff Little Fingers - Alternative Ulster performed by RAM’s Pocket Radio
The Undertones - Teenage Kicks sung by Cara Dillon
Rudi - Big Time perfomedb by As So I Watch Your From Afar (ASIWYFA image above)
Van Morrison - Madame George sung by Brian Kennedy
Paul Brady - The Island sung by Ciaran Gribbin
Cara Dillon - Hill of Thieves sung by Boxcutter
Bronagh Gallagher (image(c)Dara Munnis)
Born in Derry/Londonderry in the 1970’s, Bronagh Gallagher has been performing since an early age. Her undoubted musical talent earned her a major part in the smash hit film The Commitments which led her into a long career in film. All the while though, Bronagh was still writing and singing with select musicians culminating the release of her 2004 debut LP ‘Precious Soul’. Still active in film and television, Bronagh has found time to record a brand new album, due for release later this year.
Barry Lynn (Boxcutter)
Barry Lynn is a guitarist, bassist and producer from Lurgan. He has been releasing music since 2005 on labels such as Hotflush, his own label Kinnego Records, and Planet Mu, and has delivered six albums for the latter in as many years. He is mainly known for his dubstep-related work under the alias Boxcutter, back in the formative days of the genre, but has also released music under his own name, and more recently as The Host, an internet-themed fusion of footwork-inspired beats and cosmic instrumental sounds.
Northern Irelands Ciaran Gribbin is a Grammy nominated songwriter and performer who has worked with, amongst others, Madonna, Snow Patrol, Paul McCartney, The Script and Paul Oakenfold. As a prolific songwriter his many credits include writing (and recording) all of the songs for the acclaimed 2011 movie ‘Killing Bono’ and co-writing Madonna’s worldwide hit single ‘Celebration’. In 2011 he joined the legendary Australian band INXS as their singer and co-songwriter and has since toured in South America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.
Born in Dungiven in 1975, Cara Dillon was brought up in a close musical family immersed in the rich cultural heritage of her native County Derry. Having won the All Ireland Traditional Singing Trophy aged only 14 she went on to sing with Oige, De Dannan and then Equation. It was in this band that she met her husband and musical collaborator Sam Lakeman. The combination of Cara's expressive vocals and Lakeman's rippling piano and fresh production squeezed new life into ancient material. Their original songs sit happily alongside the traditional, reinforcing the debt they owe, whilst pointing to a distinct and distinguished musical identity all of their own.
Founded in County Down in 2000, The Answer have spent the last decade proving their rock ‘n’ roll credentials and making life-affirming, eardrum-threatening music . The band emerged into the mainstream spotlight in 2005 when their debut single ‘Keep Believin’’ became the subject of critical acclaim and led them to the ‘Best New Band’ accolade at that year’s Classic Rock Awards. The end result of their fearsome reputation, both as an astonishing live band and as rock’s brightest hopes, was a year-long stint as chief support to AC/DC, which took them around the world and into some of the biggest venues on the planet.
General Fiasco have been writing and recording for most of 2011, but came back with an EP ‘Waves’ from which ‘The Age You Start Losing Friends’ won ‘Best Song’ at the NI Music Awards held as part of the prestigious Belfast Music Week.‘Unfaithfully Yours’ is the bands second album and is released in July 2012, the follow up to 2010’s ‘Buildings’. Following their debut the band played festivals and dates around the world including Japan, New Zealand & the USA as well as festivals such Reading & Leeds, Glastonbury, Oxegen and T-In the Park. They also played support to Snow Patrol at the biggest concert ever to happen in N.Ireland at Bangor’s Ward Park.
Internationally renowned, Brian Kennedy is familiar with the tough road to fame for the aspiring singer. As a teenager, his unique voice and sheer determination led him from Belfast to London, where the legendary Van Morrison invited him to join his six-year world tour. Brian shared the highlights of this global stage with several of the ‘greats’, e.g. Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Ray Charles, John Lee Hooker and joined Van on five major albums. His own 20-year solo career has covered a wide spectrum of the music industry: Singer/songwriter (with many self-penned albums, including his hit ‘Captured’); Radio/TV host and presenter and lead performer on international stages, from New York’s Riverdance on Broadway to Eurovision 2006, Athens.
The Portadown-based singer-songwriter herself says.. “I have always had a passion for music; this love has fuelled a passion to create songs that are deep, honest and pure. Studying Music at Queen’s University, Belfast and being an organ scholar generates an eclectic range of musical influences. Music, art, literature, nature and people inspire me. My style is sensitive and contemplative or, as I like to put it, ‘Reflectivism'.“
And So I Watch You From Afar
And So I Watch You From Afar from Northern Ireland have released two albums to date, “And So I Watch You From Afar” (Smalltown America Recordings) and “Gangs” ( Richter Collective / US Sargent House). As it stands both albums have received Choice Award nominations, an XFM London Album of the Year nomination for the first album and received this year’s Northern Irish Music Awards Best Live Band award. The band has toured extensively in Europe all the way across to the Eastern side of Russia with plans this year to tour China.
RAM’s Pocket Radio
Rams’ Pocket Radio has earned comparisons with the likes of Frightened Rabbit, and played with everyone from Darwin Deez to Marina and the Diamonds and You Me at Six over the course of 2011. His songs are meticulously crafted and effortlessly epic, mixing elements of pounding, piano-based pop with heavier rock sounds. RAM’s effectively is Peter McCauley - a drummer, pianist and diverse songwriter from Lisburn. His musical career got off to a less-than-usual start, namely in the National Youth Orchestra of Northern Ireland. McCauley was one of the leading percussionists in the ensemble, an influence that you can feel in the big, bold soundscapes Rams has conjured up across these early releases.
- Paul McClean
- Feargal O'Kane
- Executive Producer
- Mike Edgar