We are delighted to confirm that Jack O’Rourke will play The Acoustic Yard Songwriters Festival on Saturday May 6th at the Town Hall Theatre Westport.
In the way that a story is only brought to life in the way in which it is told, the piano is an instrument truly appreciated by the way that it is played. To weave both a song and a story from the piano is something that, as music listeners, we long to hear fit side by side.
The lone figure of Jack O’Rourke seated at a piano is one that Irish gig goers are becoming more accustomed to seeing. Whether performing startlingly honest ballads solo or driving Spectorish rock with his versatile band, Jack’s plaintive baritone and piano are core. An insightful lyricist and powerful live performer, Jack O’Rourke began 2016 in the manner in which he finished 2015 – a growing national profile with TV and radio appearances and critical acclaim, alongside the first tracks from his approaching debut album.
His songs speak of various human conditions with melodic flair, through young but wise eyes. There already have been flattering comparisons with the likes of David Bowie and Rufus Wainwright, but Jack has been determined to find his own voice amid a plentiful sea of influences – to ensure it is the unique qualities he possesses that he becomes best known for.
His first Dublin headliner was a sold out success at Whelan’s, and he subsequently was recognised for his era-marking song ‘Silence’ by winning an award in the Nashville-based International Song Writing Competition. Despite being a newcomer on the Irish music scene, Jack has quickly built up a loyal following among music lovers for his impassioned songwriting and performances, boding well for the release of his Dreamcatcher album in October.
“To have my words and music recognised by the likes of Tom Waits means I can die happy,” says Jack. “Dreamcatcher, my debut album is deeply personal but there’s a lot of universality to absorb – love, loss, going on the tare, the little eccentricities of life are all here with a piano and a beat”
The 3rd Anniversary concert of The Acoustic Yard will be held in it’s spiritual home Matt Molloy’s Yard Bar Westport on February 22nd with special guests H A T S, Keith Plunkett (New Single Launch) and Grainne Fahy. Doors open 8.30pm and it’s free in!!
A fabulous night was had recently at The Acoustic Yard Fundraiser with celebrated songwriters Charlie mcGettigan and Kelley McRae supplying the entertainment to a large crowd at the Town hall Theatre Westport. Looking forward to the festival next May!!
Charlie also collected on behalf of Pa Curran the award for ‘The Acoustic Yard Singer/songwriter Of the Year 2016’. Well done Pa!!
To run a festival we need funding, unfortunately Westport, Co.Mayo the home of our events is a victim of it’s own success and is often excluded by governing bodies. So to counteract this we have organised a fantastic evening of singer/songwriters including Eurovision winner Charlie McGettigan and Mississippi born Americana songstress Kelley McRae in the Westport Town Hall Theatre on Tuesday October 18th. Tickets are €15/12
Belfast Folk Legend Gerry Creen plays in Matt Molloy’s as part of The Acoustic Yard Singer/Songwriters Sessions on Tuesday September 13th. he will be joined by some special guests and play some tracks from his new album ‘My Shoes’.
Gary Ferguson makes a welcome return to The Acoustic Yard from the United States on July 12th with a special performance in Matt Molloy’s accompanied by Dobro player extraordinaire Colin Henry. Gary has recently released his fabulous new EP ‘Some Bridges’ with fellow Bluegrass legend Gary (Alan) Ferguson under the appropriately named Ferguson and Ferguson.
Between the 6th – 8th May Westport will host The Acoustic Yard Singer/Songwriters Festival primarily in the Town Hall Theatre. Over 30 international acts from around the world will be playing around the town with some free events, open mic and showcase gigs.
On Friday 6th of May the festival opens with an evening concert in the Town Hall featuring Declan O’Rourke, Anna Mitchell and Craig and Willoughby.
Declan’s debut album in 2004 ‘Since Kyabram’, debuted at no. 5 on the Irish Charts and scored double-platinum sales with his song ‘Galileo (Someone Like You)’ has been recorded and performed by many artists,including singer Josh Groban
Bap Kennedy will be playing Saturday 7th of May in the Town Hall with Kathleen Turner and they will be joined from the USA by Teresa Storch and Jeff Brown.
Belfast singer/songwriter Bap Kennedy has won a global audience for his music, which fuses elements of folk and rock with a decidedly Celtic world view. He has collaborated in the past with Van Morrison, Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits) and Galway Girl writer Steve Earle. His song “Moonlight Kiss,” also landed in the Hollywood movie Serendipity starring John Cusack.
Tickets for these two events can be booked online at www,westporttheatre.com or at the booking office 098 28459.
All other events are free including the Saturday afternoon songwriters collective between 12pm and 5pm that includes international acts Daithi Rua from Belgium and Zia Land from Norway to popular local acts like Graham Sweeney and Brian Duffy. There is an open mic in the foyer with sign in at 11.45am and showcase gigs in the bar area.
The last day of the festival is called ‘The Songwriters Trail’ where listeners can follow the music from The Creel at the Quay via Mono Cafe, Hight St, The Gallery Wine Bar and Matt Molloy’s Bridge St. Artists on the day include Warren Attwell, Elaine Griffin, Brigid O’Neill and Kate O’Callaghan.
There is a special commemorative 20 track The Acoustic Yard Compilation CD on sale for 10 euros featuring some of the acts playing at this year’s festival. It can be bought at the Town Hall Theatre or online at www.theacousticyard.com.
The main focus of the festival is for singer/songwriters to have a platform to perform their own songs and for audiences to listen to original music in a relaxed environment and most importantly to enjoy a wonderful weekend of entertainment. Tickets for main evening gigs are €22 each night and can be bought online at www.westporttheatre.com or at the booking office (098) 28459.