The Gay Nineties
I remember the nineties alright. I recorded ‘Smoke And Strong Whiskey’ in Westland. It’s a strange album. I fell out with some of the musicians I’d rehearsed with and had to re-convene. The album always sounds too fast to me.
My old label put out a compilation the same time as ‘Smoke And Strong Whiskey’ and it fairly sunk the album but that’s the way those people think, so fuck ‘em (although I must admit it’s a good album!).
’King Puck’ was recorded in Ballyvourney and I used to visit Peader and Geraldine O’Riada for healing cups of tea and honey sandwiches. I got to play with Neil McColl and Máire Breathnach. Got the old ‘Rose’ down at last and also vowed never again to wear make-up no matter what the photographer told me. I still blush when I see the shaggin’ snaps.
Nancy died in 1992 but I still talk to her and I miss her too but she’s not gone too far away. I was finally cut loose from my moorings.
‘Live At The Point’ was a nightmare in the making for I regarded three different sets of gigs at the venue and mixed them all. It was arduous but also rewarding, educational, humbling and sometimes great fun. ’Graffiti Tongue’ came next and some of the early work was wonderful. Inis Meán and Passage were special but back in Ballyvourney it got very lonely. This is the loneliest album I ever made.
I realise I’m only writing about albums here but down the road I’ll fill in some gaps. I’ll tell you all about the real life after ‘Graffiti Tongue’, there was ANOTHER compilation. Yes the fucking ‘Collection Part 2’. There’s a story here too but I won’t tell it just now – only to say that it was the multinationals 1997again. The suits were pressed into my face once more. I didn’t record for three years after ‘Graffiti’ but then I discovered again that the process of recording songs should be enjoyable – that it could be (even) fun.
Me and Leo Pearson down the garden banging ‘Traveller’ together. Fuck it but ‘twas a healing balm. Young Lunny came in and played bouzouki backwards while The Edge was a welcome guest.
There’s another ten years up the spout.