Gregory Gray (Tom Robinson Tribute)

Posted in Music with tags , , on May 18, 2019 by Fanning Sessions

gregory gray - mary cigarettes

Coleraine born singer/songwriter Gregory Gray aka Mary Cigarettes died on April 25th 2019 at the age of 59. Born Paul Lerwill, Gregory started out at 19 as a guitarist in the 1970s teen group Rosetta Stone. He left the band changing his name to Gregory Gray and formed Perfect Crime who released two singles ‘Brave’ (1983) and ‘I Feel Like An Eskimo’ (1984). He then began a solo career and released three albums; ‘Think Of Swans’ (1986), ‘Strong At Broken Places’ (1990) and ‘Euroflake In Silverlake’ (1995). He later began to self release material as Mary Cigarettes. Check out his extensive writing on wordpress and music on bandcamp and YouTube. SoundCloud in particular Tom says has some late period gems.

Tom Robinson paid tribute to Gray on his BBC 6 Music radio show on 4th May 2019. Tom was joined in studio by author and lecturer Noel McLaughlin, co-author of ‘Rock and Popular Music in Ireland: Before and After U2‘ which features a chapter on Gray. Also appearing in the tribute are Gavin Martin who started the Alternative Ulster fanzine inspiring the Stiff Little Fingers track and producer & author Simon Napier Bell.

Perfect Crime recorded a Fanning session in 1982 and Gregory Gray was a studio guest on the Dave Fanning Show a number of times as remembered by Noel McLaughlin with one particular incident according to Ian Wilson generating some listener complaint. Also mentioned is the August 1996 Hot Press article ‘The Greatest Irish Rock Story Never Told’ by Stuart Clark.

Snowblindwaltz (1991)

Posted in Music with tags , on May 13, 2019 by Fanning Sessions

snowblind waltz

From Galway, Snowblindwaltz were Dave Holland (guitar & vocals), Brian Coady (bass), Pete Kelly (drums) and Michael Gallagher (vocals & guitar). They released a compilation of demos ‘Unseen and Unheard’ (1993) and an album ‘Sheer’ (1996). ‘Promises From Room 9’ (1999) was recorded but never officially released. Dave Fanning played a number of their demos. ‘Two Kinds Of Indians‘ featured on TV show ‘No Disco’ while Uaneen was at the helm. There was a reunion in 2011 with 7 tracks available on YouTube. A now defunct website can be found in the webarchive. Snowblindwaltz recorded a Fanning session but as yet we don’t know what year nor what tracks.

Iced Tiger (1991)

The Front Row – 4 part Radio Nova doc on best Irish gigs

Posted in Books, documentary, Music with tags on April 16, 2019 by Fanning Sessions

mercury rev 1999

Award winning producer Cathal Funge is at the helm of a new 4 part documentary on Radio Nova called ‘The Front Row’. Inspired by Niall McGuirk and Michael Murphy’s highly recommended book ‘In Concert – Favourite Gigs of Ireland’s Music Community‘ it looks at some of the best and most influential shows to have taken place on Irish soil through the eyes and ears of 12 carefully chosen music fans. The show goes out on Radio Nova Saturday evenings at 9pm and is repeated on Sunday morning at 9am. We will embed the shows here as they become available.

Episode 1 features Marcus Connaughton on Fleetwood Mac (1969), John Fisher on The Clash (1977) and promoter Pat Egan on Queen (1979). Episode 2 will feature Peter Devlin, Paul Page and Nick Curtis-Davis chatting about The Specials, Echo & The Bunnymen & Public Enemy. Episode 3 features Niall Crumlish, Canice Kenealy & Eileen Hogan on R.E.M., Primal Scream & Therapy?. Finally episode 4 features Ruth Medjber, Jenny Huston and Zara Hedderman talking about Placebo, Arctic Monkeys & Leonard Cohen.

Episode 1

Episode 2

Episode 3

For The Record: Catchers ‘Mute’

Posted in Music with tags , , on April 14, 2019 by Fanning Sessions

dale grundle

Our most recent post featured a Fanning session track from Portstewart’s Catchers and as luck would have it Dale Grundle of the band was just this week interviewed by Dan Hegarty as part of his excellent ‘For The Record’ series. Every week on his 2fm radio show Dan revisits a classic album, playing tracks throughout the week and featuring an interview with the artist on Wednesday. The collected interviews can be found on Dan’s soundcloud page. Artists to have featured include Engine Alley, Sultans of Ping, Simple Kid, Revenants, Ash, Blink, Republic of Loose, Hinterland, Humanzi, Wilt, Rollerskate Skinny, JJ72, Frank & Walters, The Pale, Favourite Sons, Pugwash, The Divine Comedy, Rare, An Emotional Fish, The 4 of Us, Junkster, Mundy and Jacknife Lee.

For The Record: Catchers

Catchers (1993 Session)

Posted in Music with tags , on April 10, 2019 by Fanning Sessions

catchers02

From Portstewart, Catchers were Dale Grundle (vocals/guitar), Alice Lemon (vocals/keyboards), Peter Kelly (drums), Ger FitzGerald (bass, until 1995), Craig Carpenter (bass, 1996 onwards) and Jonathan Lord (lead guitar, 1998). They released two albums on Setanta, ‘Mute’ (1994) and ‘Stooping To Fit’ (1998). In 2006, seven years after the end of Catchers, Grundle formed The Sleeping Years. To celebrate the 25 year anniversary of ‘Mute’ a remastered edition is about to be released via French label ulule. Dale will be on RTE 2fm tonight speaking to Dan Hegarty about the band and the upcoming shows. The band were the subject of a recent article in The Blackpool Sentinel. If anyone has the remaining session tracks or knows what they were we’d love to hear from you!

Beauty No 3 (1993)

The Deadly Engines (Demo)

Posted in Music with tags , , , on April 6, 2019 by Fanning Sessions

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The Deadly Engines were Paul Patrick McCartney (guitar & vocals), Joseph McCowan (bass, backing vocals), Anthony Doherty (backing vocals, noises) and Richard Rainey (drums). In 1992 they released an album ‘Entrance’ on Setanta Records. Paul PJ McCartney is also a member of Bam Bam & The Calling who have announced a show on May 4th at the Collon Bar as part of Derry Jazz Festival.

You Can’t be Lonely Forever

Optimum Hold

A House Is Dead – NCH June 29th 2019

Posted in Music with tags , on April 4, 2019 by Fanning Sessions

They said it would never come to pass, we said it would never come to pass. Thankfully we were wrong. On June 29th Dave Couse and Fergal Bunbury will reimagine ‘I Am The Greatest’ the 3rd album by A House at the National Concert Hall. We will be at the head of the virtual queue tomorrow at 10am looking for a ticket. Dave and Fergal joined Paul McLoone on TodayFM tonight to discuss this turn of events.