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IN THE ZONE
“Summer of 2004. We holed up in an old cottage in Galway. Aidan, Paul, and I set up in the old open-plan kitchen with Tim at the helm in the next room, and gave ourselves 10 days to get the core of the record down… “
GALILEO ~
“…on a piece of paper, Steve and I drew a strange impressionistic map, then built a whole orchestra, and its arrangement in a matter of hours, using only his fiddle and Christine’s cello.”
EVENTS ~
“…the studio shared a boundary wall with the resting place of Raftery, the blind poet. Years before, my Irish teacher, who often caught me drawing guitars on my books, told me I would "end up like Raftery... play’n music t’empty pockets.” I loved the omen, and felt this was my chance to prove ol’ Mr. Doodey wrong.
IN THE ZONE ~
“I had a very strong sense that returning to Galway, I was re-connecting with my ancestral home. It was a very exciting time for me.”
MARRYING THE SEA ~
"There was only one place this song could go on the record, and with it, Kyabram is book-ended by water. Various interpretations of the song’s meaning have been offered to me along the way. Most profess suicide. Would you like to hear my version?… ”
SARAH ~
“…We lost the exact count, but this take was somewhere up in the high fifties or early sixties, after numerous days happily chasing it. There were probably lots of good versions but this was the right one, and the last one…”

Declan Wins Folk Award

Declan has won the BEST ORIGINAL FOLK TRACK for Along the Western Seaboard from his latest album ‘Chronicles Of The Great Irish Famine’ at the inaugural RTÉ Radio 1 Folk Awards which took place tonight, October 25th in Vicar Street, Dublin. 

Declan was presented with the award by Moya Cannon, celebrated author and poet. The event was broadcast live on RTÉ Radio 1 and celebrates the huge range of folk music being played in Ireland today.

Declan was nominated for BEST FOLK SINGER and BEST ORIGINAL FOLK TRACK for Along the Western Seaboard.

Also attending the awards were Christy Moore, Lisa O’Neill Martin Hayes and Andy Irvine.

More praise for Chronicles Of The Great Irish Famine:

Voted Irish album of the year 2017 – Irish Mail on Sunday… “will surely come to be seen as his defining album.”
Nominated for Album of the year, Critics choice, 2017 – fRoots magazine U.K.
Voted No.1 Folk / Trad release of 2017 – London Celtic Punks webzine.… “An amazing album.”
Voted Album of the year 2017 by Marty Whelan on RTE Lyric fm… “Truly special.”
★★★★ – Songlines Magazine UK… “Delivered with consummate grace. Beautifully played. Exquisitely detailed.”
Reviewed over 13 consecutive days in ‘The Woodstock Whisperer’ online publication, NY… “Remarkable.”
Voted one of Irish Beats ‘Best Irish Albums of 2017’… “A masterpiece.”
“A work of art from start to finish. This will be around forever.”  Lynette Fay – Folk Club, BBC Radio Ulster.
“Epic” – Cara (Aer Lingus inflight magazine).

Chronicles Of The Great Irish Famine was released in October 2017. Fifteen years in the making, this epic song cycle combines the best of traditional Irish music and the heart of modern song-writing to present a series of extraordinary true tales from the most dynamic period in Irelands history.

Poor Boys Shoes’ the first song of the collection, was inspired by a passage from John O’Connor’s book “The Workhouses of Ireland.”  O’Rourke recalls, “The hair stood up on my neck when I read the lines ‘The man who carried his wife from the workhouse to their old home, mile after weary mile, and was discovered next morning dead, his wife’s feet held to his breast as if he was trying to warm them…’ I had stumbled into a chapter of history I knew almost nothing about. I wanted to share these stories the best way I knew how, through song.”

The Great Irish Famine, An Gorta Mór, was by far the most impactful era in the recorded history of Ireland. The effect on the population was so devastating that seven generations and 170 years later, Irelands population is still far from where it was in the 1840s. The Famine marked the beginning of a boom in Irish immigration resulting in over 80 million across the world claiming Irish heritage today.

The album covers hyper-real photo illustration features O’Rourke and band members re-enacting a scene from one historical tale. Following the ambush and shooting of the landlord Manning in Co.Westmeath, locals formed a mob, found Manning’s body, hacked the corpse into pieces and threw them into a ditch.

In another story from 1849, the 23 year old captain Curry Shaw abandoned his passengers and made off in the only lifeboat when ‘The Hannah’ struck ice in the frigid waters off Newfoundland. He left them to their fate. In an age where people are still fleeing their homelands en masse, struggling to escape tyranny and poverty, too often in vessels unfit for human transportation, these stories are as relevant as ever and speak to us of our own humanity.  Says O’Rourke, “The songs in this project are an attempt to bring fresh air to an unhealed wound, and to remind the Irish people of what we have overcome.

Nine of the album’s musicians including Mike McGoldrick, Dermot Byrne, Floriane Blancke, Jack Maher, Chris Herzberger, Caitríona Frost, Rob Calder and John Sheahan, performed ‘Chronicles’ around Ireland in December 2017 to a standing ovation each night, and will take it abroad throughout 2018 and 2019.

The winter of 2018 will mark the 170th anniversary of the peak of this most significant series of events.

‘Chronicles of the Great Irish Famine’ is available HERE.

Play Video

KYABRAM IS BACK! NEW RELEASE AND TOUR.

Since Kyabram was re-released Nov 16th, and is available now via the Warners store, and usual outlets.

The record is available on vinyl for the first time, and the CD version has been re-packaged into a deluxe 6 panel digipak, that includes a 20 page booklet with lyrics, and new retrospective liner notes by the artist, giving insights into the recording of each song, and the build up to the making of the record.

Look out for snippets of these around the site, and click here to get your copy…

To celebrate the re-release of his classic 2004 debut, O’Rourke will take members of the original band around Ireland this December for a handful of nostalgic, and uplifting shows. Including Galileo, No Brakes, Sarah, Love Is The Way, and Marrying The Sea, the band will play the entire album, along with outakes, and a few surprises!

Kyabram Is Back Tour Dates:

DATELOCATIONVENUETICKETS
Dec 1Waterford ‘Kyabram is Back’ tour
Garter Lane, Waterford
Dec 2Dublin‘Kyabram is Back’ tour
Whelan’s, Wexford Street, Dublin
Dec 7Cork‘Kyabram is Back’ tour
Live at St Luke’s, St. Luke’s Former Church, Summerhill North, Cork
Dec 11Galway‘Kyabram Is Back’ tour, Galway Town Hall, Galway.
Dec 20Limerick ‘Kyabram is Back’ tour
Dolan’s Warehouse, Limerick
Dec 22Wexford‘Kyabram is Back’ tour
St Iberius Church Wexford
Dec 29Dundalk (support by Eugene Donegan) ‘Kyabram is Back’ tour The Spirit Store
Georges Quay, Dundalk, Co. Louth

IN THE ZONE ~
“Summer of 2004. We holed up in an old cottage in Galway. Aidan, Paul, and I set up in the old open-plan kitchen with Tim at the helm in the next room, and gave ourselves 10 days to get the core of the record down… “
GALILEO ~
“…on a piece of paper, Steve and I drew a strange impressionistic map, then built a whole orchestra, and its arrangement in a matter of hours, using only his fiddle and Christine’s cello.”
EVENTS ~
“…the studio shared a boundary wall with the resting place of Raftery, the blind poet. Years before, my Irish teacher, who often caught me drawing guitars on my books, told me I would "end up like Raftery... play’n music t’empty pockets.” I loved the omen, and felt this was my chance to prove ol’ Mr. Doodey wrong.
IN THE ZONE ~
“I had a very strong sense that returning to Galway, I was re-connecting with my ancestral home. It was a very exciting time for me.”
MARRYING THE SEA ~
"There was only one place this song could go on the record, and with it, Kyabram is book-ended by water. Various interpretations of the song’s meaning have been offered to me along the way. Most profess suicide. Would you like to hear my version?… ”
SARAH ~
“…We lost the exact count, but this take was somewhere up in the high fifties or early sixties, after numerous days happily chasing it. There were probably lots of good versions but this was the right one, and the last one…”
SINCE KYABRAM (SIGNED CD)
SINCE KYABRAM (SIGNED VINYL)

CHRONICLES OF THE GREAT IRISH FAMINE

Here’s a short video we made during the recent beautiful, and unexpected show that was put on by ‘The Beast From The East’ storm, a la Mother Nature.

I was reminded that the winter of 1845 into 1846, which marked the beginning of a series of events now known as ‘The Great Irish Famine’ or ‘An Gorta Mór’ was one of the worst winters in living memory across Europe.

Perhaps it wouldn’t have looked so different to this…

Declan O’Rourke and band. BBC Radio 2 folk award nominee 2018. Best Original Song. The Great Saint Lawrence River, from the album ‘Chronicles Of The Great Irish Famine’.
 
Accompanying music to the video is from ‘Clogman’s Glen’, (track 1 from the same record). Shot in the Burren, Co. Galway.

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CHRONICLES OF THE GREAT IRISH FAMINE

BRAND NEW ALBUM 

Declan O’Rourke released his new album ‘Chronicles Of The Great Irish Famine’. You can buy the album now on CD or vinyl

Fifteen years in the making, this epic song cycle combines the best of traditional Irish music and the heart of modern song-writing to present a series of extraordinary true tales from the most dynamic period in Ireland’s history.

A 9-piece band will accompany Declan to tour the new compositions across Ireland, including Mike McGoldrick, Dermot Byrne, Floriane Blancke, Jack Maher, Chris Herzberger, Catriona Frost, Rob Calder and John Sheahan.

JOHNNY AND THE LANTERN

EXCLUSIVE NEW VIDEO

UPCOMING TOUR DATES

DATELOCATIONVENUETICKETS
Sept 14The Glens CentreNew Line, Manorhamilton, Co. Leitrim
Sept 15Bray, Co WicklowMermaid Arts Centre, Bray, Co Wicklow
Sept 28Blanchardstown, Co DublinDraoicht, Blanchardstown, Co Dublin
Oct 4Ballincollig, Co CorkThe White Horse, West Village, Ballincollig, Co. Cork
Oct 5Carrigtohill, Co CorkFota House, Fota Island, Carrigtohill, Co Cork
Oct 12London, UKLondon Irish Centre, 50-52 Camden Square, London, NW1 9XB
Oct 14ManchesterRoyal Northern College of Music, 124 Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9RD
Oct 17GalwayCANCELLED : Spiegeltent, Galway. CANCELLED
Nov 10Belfast, Northern IrelandThe Mac (Metropolitan Arts Centre), 10 Exchange Street West, Belfast, BT1 2NJ, Northern Ireland.
Nov 11Perth, ScotlandPerth Concert Hall, Mill Street, Perth, PH1 5HZ, Scotland
Nov 17Tinahely, Co WicklowCourthouse Arts Centre, Dwyer Square, Ballinacor, Tinahely, Co. Wicklow
Nov 30LongfordBackstage, Farneyhoogan, Longford.
Dec 1Waterford ‘Kyabram is Back’ tour
Garter Lane, Waterford
Dec 2Dublin‘Kyabram is Back’ tour
Whelan’s, Wexford Street, Dublin
Dec 7Cork‘Kyabram is Back’ tour
Live at St Luke’s, St. Luke’s Former Church, Summerhill North, Cork
Dec 11Galway‘Kyabram Is Back’ tour, Galway Town Hall.
Dec 20Limerick ‘Kyabram is Back’ tour
Dolan’s Warehouse, Limerick
Dec 22Wexford‘Kyabram is Back’ tour, St Iberius Church, Wexford
Dec 29Dundalk (support by Eugene Donegan) ‘Kyabram is Back’ tour The Spirit Store
Georges Quay, Dundalk, Co. Louth

PRAISE FOR DECLAN

“A most talented singer-songwriter… [possessing] a rich, soulful, musical voice and a brilliant instrumental ability” – Paul Brady

“One of the finest songwriters on the planet”  – Eddi Reader

Declan performing at the Soma Festival 2016

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