Good Life – Soulé

The unbelievably good weather calls for a feel good tune. Even though ‘Good Life’ by Irish artist Soulé was released back in February it has summer written all over it! I love the positive energy of this song and her vibe in general.

Pronounced Soul-A, she was born in the UK and raised in Balbriggan where she’s now based. She cites her influences as Erykah Badu, Macy Grey, ASA, Chrisette Michele, and Nneka. She says she only got serious about singing a year ago but it looks like she’s already set for huge success with her latest single ‘Troublemaker’ racking up 500,000 plays on Spotify in two months, and a Choice Music Prize nomination for ‘Song of the Year’ in 2016.

Diffusion Lab are behind this video, as they were with the Jafaris video I posted recently.

Here she is chatting to Stuart Clark from Hot Press after her set at Forbidden Fruit. You can catch her live at Sea Sessions this weekend and on the Other Voices stage at Electric Picnic.

Totally Irish and Jafaris

Last Sunday the lovely John Barker asked me to be a guest on his show Totally Irish on 98FM. As the name suggests, the show is focussed on Irish music, from up and coming and established artists. Ham Sandwich did a live acoustic set followed by a set from Rocstrong. After that I joined John, together with Martin Byrne from Other Voices, to talk about three tracks from three Irish artists: James Vincent McMorrow, Jafaris, and The Fontaines.

I already knew and loved James Vincent McMorrow, I wasn’t such a huge fan of The Fontaines, and Jafaris was by far my favourite track of the evening. You might recognise Jafaris from his role in the award winning Irish movie Sing Street. As well as being an actor, he’s an accomplished rapper and has just released a four track EP called Velvet Cake available on iTunes. My favourite track from the EP is ‘Keep Your Head High’.

Jafaris is working with Diffusion Lab (who are doing some amazing work with Irish hip hop artists) and they have created a couple of videos for this EP, including this gorgeously shot one for ‘Love Dies’.

If you want to check out the whole podcast of the show, here’s the link.  I’m on in the last half an hour. Hope you enjoy!

Vinyl Love for Repeal

I’m very proud to be DJing this Sunday May 14th at Vinyl Love for Repeal, a charity gig with all proceeds going towards the Coalition to Repeal the Eighth Amendment.

The Vinyl Love collective has brought together DJs and music lovers to play eight of their favourite vinyl records in eight different cities on Sunday May 14th. The cities and venues are South William/Wah Wah Club in Dublin, 40ft Brewery in London, Gulp’d Cafe in Cork, Mojo Lounge in Waterford, Ormston House in Limerick, Roisin Dubh in Galway, Tricky’s McGarrigles in Sligo and Common Edge Street in Manchester.

There’s a suggested donation in each venue but you can donate whatever you can afford. It starts at 2pm and continues on until late. Hopefully the weather will be gorgeous and we can all enjoy a drink and great tunes in aid of a great cause.

Here’s Nialler9 explaining a bit more about the event.

 

March Random Round Up

March was Women’s History Month, a concept I find kind of reductive because women are a part of and make history twelve months a year but moving on from that…here’s a list of groundbreaking female authors you should bookmark for your next book shop visit.

Zadie Smith’s beautiful story about Billie Holiday in the New Yorker is seriously worth reading.

This month I watched Season 2 of Love on Netflix and had mixed feelings about it. Gillian Jacobs’ performance is one of the highlights. One of the not-so-great things about the series is this.

Royal Blood are releasing their second album later this year and they’re teasing us with this studio clip. Bring. It. On.

The upcoming documentary Kiki looks amazing, a new take drag ball culture which first reached mainstream popularity in Paris Is Burning.

Speaking of drag, Netflix has struck a deal whereby new episodes of Rupaul’s Drag Race are streamable the day after they’re broadcast in the US. Season 9 is two episodes in and Valentina’s my early favourite.

Drunk – Thundercat

He’s back! Thundercat (AKA Stephen Bruner), bass player, singer, producer, funkmeister extraordinaire, drops his fourth studio album Drunk this Friday. I’ve already pre-ordered it and you can be guaranteed I’ll be caning it in my gaff this weekend. The album includes two previously released tracks, ‘Them Changes’ (which I have played to death and still adore) and ‘Bus In These Streets‘.

Drunk promises collaborations with Pharrell, Kendrick Lamar, Wiz Khalifa as well as 80s favourites Michael McDonald and Kenny Loggins who guest on ‘Show You The Way’ which was the first single. ‘Friend Zone’ is the most recent single, the one which is responsible for me walking around singing, ‘Because I’d rather play Mortal Kombat anyway-ay…’ for the last week!

Thundercat plays Vicar Street on March 27th. See you there!

NewBliss – National Concert Hall – 28th February 2017

The wonderful man that is Keith Donald (AKA father of The Multiverse) is performing his one-man show, NewBliss, in the John Field Room of the National Concert Hall on 28th February. Tickets are €20 (€18 concession) and you can book online at the National Concert Hall.

NewBliss tells the story of the highs and lows of Keith’s six-decade long career, half of which was spent under the shadow of alcoholism. It is an insight into the life of a musician, from pit orchestra gigs to pay the bills, all the way through to sold out stadium tours. The show is one man on stage with 900 lines of verse, 10 songs and 5 musical instruments.

He’s most well known as a founder member of Moving Hearts, but he’s played with the greats (I know, I was there for a lot of it!) from Van Morrison, Ronnie Drew and Christy Moore to Gerry Mulligan, Zoot Sims and Vusi Mahlahsela. NewBliss has already been performed abroad and in Ireland and the reception has been amazing. If you have any interest in Irish music, or the life of a working musician, or in seeing how someone manages to overcome an addiction that threatens to derail everything they’ve worked for, then put this in your diary!

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Anymore – Goldfrapp

 

Last week Goldfrapp debuted the first single from their upcoming album Silver Eye which will be released on March 31st. ‘Anymore’ is unmistakably Goldfrapp-ian: fuzzy four-to-the-floor synth-pop underneath signature breathy vocals. The sound is reminiscent of their second album Black Cherry and is bound to be a winner at gigs. I can’t wait to hear the rest of the album.