We recently discovered the photographs of Shane McCarthy and have been going through some old posts shamelessly adding artwork (we did ask permission first – thanks Shane!). One of the posts that received a touch up job was this one featuring a solitary Juniper session track which we heard on the Dan Hegarty show back when he was digging out “classic” sessions. Thanks to a kind reader we now have the full session. Juniper of course was the band that preceeded Bellx1 and and featured Damien Rice (vocals & guitar), Paul Noonan (vocals & drums), Dominic Phillips (bass), Brian Crosby (keyboards) and David Geraghty (vocals & guitar).
From Maynooth, Co. Kildare, Scale The Heights were David O’Driscoll (vocals), Tony Doherty (guitar), Liam Kirkpatrick (bass) and Paul McAllister (drums). They released a demo in 1988 and a single ‘Goodbye To All That’ / ‘So Soon’ on WEA Records in 1989. On 01/05/1989 they recorded a Fanning session featuring tracks ‘Cold’, ‘Happy Ever After’, ‘One Step Away’ and ‘Go Hang Yourself’. They featured in a number of Hot Press end of year critics roundups, here’s what Damian Corless wrote:
“Band Of The Year, however, without a shadow of a doubt, were Kildare’s Carling/Hot Press winners, Scale The Heights, who combine an incendiary live attack with some of the finest songs ever written in the history of the planet – I kid you not” HotPress Critics Roundup 1988
Juniper were formed in 1991 by Dodi Ma (vocals), Paul Noonan (drums), Dominic Phillips (bass) and Brian Crosby (guitar) in Celbridge, Co Kildare. David Geraghty joined in 1993. Juniper released two EPs ‘The J-Plane’ (1994) and ‘Manna’ (1996) and two singles ‘Weatherman‘ (1998) and ‘World Is Dead’ (1998). They recorded a Fanning session in 1996 featuring tracks ‘Expensive Silence’, ‘Then Go’, ‘Never’ and ‘Deliverance’. In 1998 following a disagreement with their record label Dodi Ma quit the band and moved to Tuscany. The remaining band members regrouped as Bellx1 with Paul Noonan on vocals and are about to release their sixth album ‘Bloodless Coup’. Dodi Ma reverted to his real name Damien Rice and released ‘O’ in 2002 which achieved considerable success worldwide.
From Newbridge in Co. Kildare, Luka Bloom first came to prominence for this observer at least as Barry Moore, a member of Red Square, a Dublin based post punk act with George Sweeney (guitar, vocals ex Vipers) and Joe Lahart (bass). That band was active from 1983 until 1986 when Barry chose to pursue a career as a solo singer-songwriter which he has been doing successfully ever since. This track appeared on Luka’s 1988 solo album although I cannot confirm if this is that version of the track. Incidentally the track also appeared on a 2001 compilation ‘The Barry Moore Years‘ , a snapshot of the years 1975 – 1986. Luka has just released an album ‘Dreams in America‘ and is currently touring the UK.
From Athy in Co Kildare, The Practical Householders were Trisha Smyth (lead vocals), Jackie Kelly (backing vocals), Mick O’Rourke (guitar), Colm Walsh (accordion), Pat Casey (bass) and Dave Ward (drums). Paul Donohue and Dave Mullhall replaced Pat and Dave respectively in 1987 and it is they who feature on this recording. This track was taken from the Comet Two sampler. The original lineup recorded a 3 track demo which was produced by Stano. Expect another post when we get our hands on a copy. There are photos so as soon as we can locate one will update this post.
In the absence of an official RTE 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. We are interested in anything recorded from irish radio or TV in the 1980s.