Originally based in Cork (1986-1988) Soon were to reform in a Dublin-based incarnation (1992-1996) and that is the lineup who recorded this 1993 demo – Tony O’Sullivan (vocals), Martin Dunlea (guitar), Simon McVeigh (bass) and Willie Walsh (drums). The second track features Maurice Seezer on accordion. The comments are from Tony O’Sullivan on Soundcloud.
This is the first song of four demo’d by the Cork/Dublin incarnation of SOON at Ringsend Road Studios, Dublin in early January 1993. Written by Tony O’Sullivan and recorded and mixed by Willie Mannion, it was given extensive airplay by RTE’s Dave Fanning which helped the band to quickly build an audience on the Dublin music scene at the time. A song dealing with the often tragic consequences of religious mania, SOON’s drummer Willie, a devout Christian, agonised on the day over whether it bordered on sacrilege and became increasingly reluctant to play on it. Ultimately, it was only recorded after some detailed analysis of the lyric and I’m glad he trusted me, his groove here is phenomenal. He did however say “Tony man, this is so fuckin’ dark” and he was right. It still is.
Straitjacket Jesus (1993)
A Hip-Hop Tango recorded at the height of Grunge! Also a playful dig at the insipient Pop scene of the day, this was the second of four songs recorded on the same day in January ’93 and features guest musician Maurice Seezer on suitably sinister Accordion. It was a lot of fun to play (despite the key changes) and the line “You kiss my hand, you don’t know where it’s been” still brings a smile to the face. Martin’s lead playing here is pretty special I think.
Moody Mean & Squeaky Clean (1993)
One of four songs SOON put down on tape in one day in January 1993 at Ringsend Road Studios, Dublin, it was recorded live in one take (and later mixed) by Willie Mannion. Featuring Kevin Murphy (cello).
The Pale were formed in Dublin in 1990 by Matthew Devereux (vocals), Shane Wearen (mandolin) and Sean Molloy (bass). This Fanning session recorded for RTE in 1991 was their first ever recording and the only one to feature the original band lineup. This is the first time since they were recorded that the band have heard these tracks which were never released or indeed recorded again. The Pale are playing Hard Working Class Heroes on the 3rd October in the Mercantile, Dame Street, Dublin.
One good interview begets another. Recorded during the same tour as the recently posted Mickey Bradley interview, here are Stuart and Ian from Big Country on RTE Radio2 with the venerable Dave Fanning on November 26th 1986. Thank you to the kind reader who dug this out.
In 1986 Big Country toured Ireland stopping off in Derry’s Templemore Sports Complex on the way. Stuart Adamson took time out from the sound check on December 2nd 1986 to speak to Mickey Bradley for his Radio Foyle show Mickey’s Monkey. Stuart Adamson sadly passed away in 2001.
In the absence of an official 2FM Fanning Session archive consider this blog a humble starting point. Any musical submissions would be gratefully accepted as are any corrections or recollections... click on the pic to send an email or even better comment on the post in question. I'm interested in anything recorded from irish radio and TV in the 80s.