2015 FESTIVAL ARTISTS

AMIDSHIPS

Dublin / Belfast based quintet Amidships specialise in an infectious blend of atmospheric indie. Their music has been featured on the likes of BBC Radio 1, BBC 6 Music, Phantom 105.2 (TXFM) and RTE 2XM, and also featured in soundtracks on BBC and RTE television. In recent times they have shared the stage with the likes of Villagers, Frightened Rabbit, Snow Patrol, and Glasvegas. They're an act to catch as soon as you possibly can.

"They are without doubt one of Ireland's most exciting prospects.“ Hot Press

"Amidships’ sound has a presence that is at once vulnerable and unyielding. Their set is melancholic brilliance, a truly sensational performance." The Thin Air

"Amidships are a band that many people will fall in love with, we've already done so." Phantom 105.2

 

“Beautiful, beautiful stuff.” The Irish Daily Star

“This is certainly the start of something special.” BBC Radio 1 Introducing

 

www.amidships.net

www.breakingtunes.com/amidships

www.amidships.bandcamp.com

 

 
AMANDA ST JOHN

Amanda St John is a soul and blues singer/songwriter from Glenariffe, Co.Antrim. Known for her powerful and emotive vocals Amanda has recently returned from recording in Nashville where she was compared to Dusty Springfield by BB King & Wilson Pickets producer. Catch her live to see her at her best!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
CLAIRE HILL

A 21 year old acoustic-folk singer-songwriter from Portstewart. She released debut EP 'The Otherside' in December 2012 and since then has continued to write and perform. She feels it is difficult to not be inspired by the beautiful coastal surroundings in the North Coast of Ireland, especially around her home town!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
CLAIRE TURNER

At 25 years of age, Claire Turner has been composing for most of her life, playing piano, guitar and of course singing. She has performed on television on programs through Cinemagics Belfast workshops, Waves 20th Anniversary, Lesser Spotted Culture and Songs of Praise. Claire is a session worker and has featured in a few upcoming albums. She often performs for charitable causes and has been doing this at various events for a number of years.

 
 
 
 
 
THE CLAMEENS

Derry based teen quartet The Clameens are one of the fastest rising prospects to emerge from the Northern Irish music scene in recent times. The Band made up of four teenage friends and a set of brothers have set a brand of honest and infectious indie pop rock which  has pricked the ears of media & industry  everywhere, with appearances on BBC Radio 1, 6Music MTV and  RTE Other Voices.

They may be incredibly youthful, but this band are force to be reckoned with, they have recently had great exposure, including been selected as one of MTV's Unsigned bands of 2014, TV performances on BBC & RTE and supported acts such as The Undertones, Professor Green & Pete Doherty, as well as appearing at the showcase festival "The Great Escape" & this year’s Electric Picnic. With Label interest on the table The Clameens are set to release their first EP in coming months with a string of new dates calendared for the UK in 2015.

 

http://www.breakingtunes.com/theclameens

http://theclameensmusic.bandcamp.com/

 

 
FARRIERS

Known for emotive and passionate live gigs, Farriers have garnered widespread critical acclaim for the quality and honesty of their music. The band have stripped back their performance for this intimate show, and will include songs that will undoubtedly conjure the imagery of misspent youthful journeys, long forgotten company and heady nights of whiskey fuelled certainty.

 

www.farriers.bandcamp.com/

www.folkandtumble.com/interview-farriers/

 

 

 

 

 

 
THE HOLY INNOCENTS

The Holy Innocents are a rock n roll band, based in Belfast. Their debut album “Letter to Lone Ridge” was released in Autumn 2013 with lead single “Freshly Fallen Snow” receiving extensive play on local and national radio, leading to an appearance at the historic Isle of Wight festival. The band will take to the road again later in 2015 in support of their follow up album “Fortune” which is due for release in September.

 

www.breakingtunes.com/holyinnocents

www.theholyinnocents.com

 

 
 
 
JESSICA DOHERTY

At the tender age of sixteen, Jessica Doherty has wasted no time in kick-starting her career. With performances at MTV Crashes, Other Voices Music Trail, Glasgowbury, Stendhal Festival, Record Store Day, Music City and the Gasyard Feile she has been building momentum with an ever increasing velocity. Jessica has supported artists including Janet Devlin & Rosie Carney and performed on the Rudy Maxa live broadcast (the most widely syndicated travel show in the US) with an approximate audience in excess of 700,000.

 

'A diligent & focused young talent with massive potential. An artist you’ll no doubt be hearing a lot about in the future.”

 

www.chordblossom.com

www.jessicadohertymusic.com

 

 
JIM MCKEE

Jim McKee is originally from Cookstown, Co Tyrone and has been based in the west of Ireland for the past 13 years.

His eclectic collection of uplifting and thought provoking self-penned songs -  some of which have featured around the world in the award winning film ‘Songs For Amy’ - comprise his albums, ‘Goodness Comes From the Heart, ‘Just a Piece Of’, ‘Unplugged Matters’ and the newly released ‘Energy Rising’,

Over the years, Jim has toured and played with many different bands including Island Eddy (with whom he wrote for and recorded the album of the same name produced by Arty McGlynn), Bridge Street, Full Steam A Head and the award winning White Hare Band who won the Danny Kyle Open Stage Competition at the Glasgow Celtic Connections Festival.

He performs live with his band and as a singer/songwriter throughout Ireland, Europe and America and has toured with Mark Lanegan, Lissie, Mick Flannery and Ocean Colour Scene.

Jim has been a professional artist since 2001 and has exhibited extensively throughout Ireland, the UK, USA and France.

He is self-taught and is fearless with paint.

"Jim has developed, in a short space of time, a personal and recognizable style, imbued with life and energy and colour. He uses a palette knife, virtually playing the oils like a musical instrument and the results are humorous and honest, impressionistic renderings and reflections of Ireland today, its passing traditions, its people and its landscape.

His portraits are strong in expression, vibrant in colour and invariably of subjects who have made a major impact on his life." – THE KENNY GALLERY, GALWAY

Jim now spends his time between touring his music and art at home in the Burren, Co Clare and his native County Tyrone.

His partner is Irish novelist Emma Heatherington and he has two sons, Dualta and Sonny James.

 

 
LORE

Derry based original three piece folk indie band Lore, has just released their debut self-titled EP and fan-voted single "Lost‟. The three piece band has spent the past ten months penning songs and playing at Festivals across N. Ireland and in the UK. The band have been doing live Radio Slots with Local and National Radio Stations which has given their unique sound a much wider audience.

The band is fronted by singer/songwriter Carolann Carlile. Born in Belfast Carolann was raised in the musical heart of Derry- Stendhal and Danny Boys own Limavady. On piano and from rural Dungiven is composer/song writer Raymond O'Kane. Raymond is a degree level music student and has a background in community related arts. Completing the trio is Irish traditional session acoustic guitarist and composer Luke McCloskey, from Dungiven Co.Derry.  Lore is taken from folklore and refers to the traditional art of storytelling …telling the story of Life, Love, Loss and Fate.

 

www.breakingtunes.com/lore

www.facebook.com/officiallore

 

 
MARK BLAIR

Mark Blair, songwriter with former local sensations The Red Velvetines returns with his own brand of music. Proudly hailing from the North Coast Mark has branched out on his own to share his songs about beauty, anger and redemption.

Mark reaches out into many genres to restrict the constraints of pigeon holing and allow him to produce the sound must suited to the song. His music mostly covers Blues, Rock n’ Roll, Folk, Acoustic but occasionally delves into Electronica. Having already played with some of the best musicians around, Mark has established himself as one to watch out for both locally and further afield.

 

www.markblairofficial.com/#!music/c61v

 

 
MERE MOTHS

Mere Moths is the project name under which 18 year old Co. Down native Patrick Wright performs. Patrick is becoming a regular fixture on the North Coast after winning the Red Sails BOTB 2014 and performing at Atlantic Sessions 2014. He was also selected for HWCH 2014 in Dublin and MTV Crashes Cork music trail. Patrick has just returned from London after performing at Johnny Hero's 'road to London' showcase to a panel of record labels, A&R and promoters.

 

www.meremoths.com

 

 
 
 
OUR KRYPTON SON

Hailing from Derry, Our Krypton Son has played Other Voices in Dingle, T Vital and gigged with Hozier, Duke Special and Gemma Hayes amongst others. With an album and several singles under his belt, he is currently finishing a second album to be released this summer on Smalltown America Records.

 

 
 
 
 
 
REBECCA MULHERN

Rebecca Mulhern is a 15 year old singer/songwriter from Derry/Londonderry. She is a classically-trained pianist and flautist who also plays acoustic guitar and ukulele and percussion.

Rebecca was heavily involved in both The Music Promise and SYNC Project for the last two years. During this time she performed live on stage and on local radio (both as a classical and acoustic musician) as part of City of Culture 2013 and Music City 2014, showcasing her original songs alongside a catalogue of covers of artists who have inspired her.

Rebecca continues to perform regularly at many local events.

 

 
 
 
ROBYN G SHIELS

Earlier this year Kilrea songwriter Robyn G Shiels scooped the Northern Ireland Music Prize for the album ‘The Blood Of The Innocents’, which became the second album to be honoured, following inaugural winner Joy Of Nothing by Foy Vance last year.

Darkness has always been more appealing than the light. Truly, that moment between day and night is where we find the real truth about ourselves, and there are none more adept at chronicling this netherworld than Belfast based songwriter Robyn G Shiels.

“Timelessness” is a difficult quality to pin down, but with his tales of heartbreak and alienation, Shiels’ songs could be set in the gothic south of Flannery O’Connor, or contemporary Belfast, a million miles away from the smiling postcard images of the city that so many are familiar with. Nothing is certain in Shiels’ world, other than the fact that the night is darkest just before the dawn.

His songs speak of experience and life lived, but still point towards something new.

Whether stripped back to just the voice and acoustic guitar, or cutting loose in a full band setting, Robyn G Shiels is able to bring a documentarian’s eye to any situation, coupled with the words of a poet. But just before it all seems too dark, he pulls back, a twinkle in his eye and another story to tell. In the world of Robyn G Shiels, it might be dark, but there’s still a powerful sense of warmth.

 

www.rgshiels.com

www.breakingtunes.com/robyngshiels

www.hotpress.com/Robyn-G-Shiels/news/Shiels-Keeps-Turning-iHot-Pressi-checks-in-with-Robyn-G-Shiels/13599862.html

www.culturenorthernireland.org/features/music/robyn-g-shiels-winning-ni-music-prize

 

 
SCORPION JACK

David Preston is the singer, guitarist and songwriter in the folk rock group Scorpion Jack.  Just having released their second album, 5 Long Days,  David is writing their third album.  Hailing from the Mournes, Newcastle County Down, David takes on the tradition of songwriting and music well known in the area and adds an extra element of zeal to his performances.  Set to tour Switzerland and Germany later in the month he is very pleased to have the opportunity to play for the Portstewart Songwriters Festival.

 

www.scorpionjackmusic.com/

 

 
 
 
SULLIVAN AND GOLD

Sullivan & Gold released their debut album 'For Foes' to critical acclaim. The album received airplay on Radio 1, Radio Ulster, RTE Radio 1 and was nominated for the 2014 Northern Ireland Music Prize. 'For Foes' provides a soundtrack to anybody falling in or out of love and is infused with detailed storytelling and ethereal melodies.

They have toured and played in many unusual venues/spaces - a bookshop, a thatched cottage, a cathedral refurbished into an arts centre and most recently Sullivan & Gold travelled to some of the UK's most remote islands off the west coast of Scotland on a yacht.

 

www.sullivanandgold.com

 

 

 

TONI WHITTEN

Toni Whitten is a young singer-songwriter from Ballymoney who has recently been making waves for herself playing shows and festivals around the country, developing an avid following. Drawing inspiration from the likes of Nirvana, Sheryl Crow and Bright Eyes, Toni has developed her own incredible sound, playing her songs with equal measures of heart and angst. You will find yourself completely mesmerized by her music.

 

 
 
 
 
THE WOOD BURNING SAVAGES

THE WOOD BURNING SAVAGES are just as happy up to their elbows in chainsaws and motor oil as they are blowing the roof off your local club. Having already left countless audiences (including Glastonbury 2014 BBC Introducing Stage) hung-over on the joys of life and craving more, The Wood Burning Savages serve their own cocktail of wit and ferocity in copious amounts for all to enjoy.

Conceived in a farmhouse garage in Derry, Northern Ireland, the band have since adopted a nomadic lifestyle and now live on a diet of substandard coffee, stale sandwiches and menthol lozenges. They’ve come to enjoy this state of affairs and have ignored all medical advice, intending to continue on this path to its logical end.

 

“Derry/Londonderry's The Wood Burning Savages are The Most Amazing Live band I Have Seen All Year - bar none. End of." - Tom Robinson, BBC 6 Music.

 

www.facebook.com/TheWoodBurningSavages

thewoodburningsavages.bandcamp.com/

www.breakingtunes.com/thewoodburningsavages

 

Please note more information of most of our artists can be found on Facebook and Twitter.