Here are two songs filmed at Leo’s Tavern, a beautiful pub seemingly in the middle of nowhere in the wilds of the west of Donegal, Ireland owned by the Brennan family of Clannad fame. In fact Moya Brennan, Clannad’s lead vocalist, co-hosted this particular evening of wonderful music performed to a full house of warm appreciative people. Irish Gaelic is the first language in this part of Donegal and a band of brothers harmonising in their native tongue was a particular highlight for me.
My good friend Jacqui Sterling, whom I also performed with, sent the organisers an audio file of ‘Pre- war Blues’ from the DFG’s ‘Long Gone the Day‘ album to get me on the bill at the last minute, (Thanks Jac). To continue the reggae vibe I also chose to perform John Holt’s ‘Man Next Door’, a staple of the DFG’s live set, usually sung by the late Darren Jones. For a long time after Darren’s senseless murder I found it very difficult to perform songs from this period without going to pieces at the thought of never seeing my friend again. However in more recent times, especially since moving to the other side of the world, I am once again able to perform these songs quite happily with a certain pride and even a touch of nostalgia. I hope you enjoy these blasts from the past.
Paradoxically whilst re-visiting my past, my songwriting muse also appears to have returned with two new songs ‘Fire in the Dark’ and ‘She is my Home’, recently demo’d and filmed whilst staying near Enniskillen in Northern Ireland. You can check these out on my YouTube channel too. Whilst in Ireland I also finished another song entitled ‘By The Time I Get To Heaven I’ll Be Too Tired To Roll’. I hope to record these songs properly and maybe even put together another album in the not too distant future.
We are currently residing near East Grinstead, about half way between London and Brighton, living and WWOOFing on a smallholding as well as working part-time nearby helping to look after horses at The Equine Centre for Change. We plan to stay here for the next six months. There appears to be a lively counter-culture here of people into organic farming and sustainable living. We are also informed that there are many musicians, artists and fellow antipodeans in these parts which we hope to meet and possibly collaborate with in the future. Time will tell?
As we are nearing the end of our first full year in the Northern Hemisphere together I would like to take this opportunity to wish everybody a happy and otherwise stress free festive season.
All the best,