O how I have fallen behind on my posts; mea culpa…As I mentioned a while back, I decided to go to Galway on a whim to see a Lisa Hannigan show at the Róisín Dubh (which is Gaelic for “black rose”) http://www.roisindubh.net/contact.php. “Located in the West of Galway city, which anyone will tell you is the heart and soul of the town, the Roisin Dubh has been firmly established over the years as one of the finest music venues in the world”.
This is this black rose they stamped on my hand and my Claddagh ring:
It was the first time in my life that I went to a concert all alone and I must admit that as I was waiting to get in, it felt kind of odd. I arrived early as there are no seats per se; it’s not a performance hall but rather, a little room in a pub. There was a group of 5 people waiting in line in front of me, all friends, all from different countries. I overheard two of the girls saying that they had spotted Lisa earlier on during the evening walking down the street and they followed her and waited for her to enter a store and as soon as she did, they opened up their guitar case and started singing some of Lisa’s songs on the sidewalk, hoping to have a chance to meet her! Brilliant plan because as it turns out, it worked! While we were waiting in line a woman came through the Gothic arch that was separating us from Lisa and said: are you the girls who were singing Lisa’s songs? She wants to meet you! When they came back out they were gushing like lovesick kids. Later on during the concert Lisa said that it was the first time that she came across someone playing her songs and that she was so excited, she called her mom; she said it made her day. Little did she know it was all staged! Hehe. The atmosphere was very laid back there; we could hear Lisa do her sound check and even see her once in a while when someone forgot to draw back the little curtain that covered the arch.
When I was finally able to enter the room, I noticed that they had benches on the outer edges of the room so I headed to the very front and took a seat! There was incense burning and cute little strings of garden lights hanging off the instruments 🙂
The first act was an Irish singer by the name of Ulton Conlon http://www.myspace.com/ultanconlon who was really talented! He had such a smooth, beautiful voice and a sweet shy personality. The lyrics to his songs truly touched me, especially at that moment given everything I had been feeling: “I would never say, I would never do, anything to hurt you. You’re greater than the universe, it’s true”. I didn’t for one minute think: OK, get it over with, I’m here to see Lisa; I enjoyed every one of his songs and will surely purchase his first CD, which should be out any day now (he kept plugging it during his show)!
I met a really friendly Irish girl by the name of Keira that evening and we talked quite a bit. Turns out she teaches English as a second language! We had quite a lot in common and it made my evening that much more enjoyable to have her there.
And then came Lisa…I must say that I had not seen a concert in a long time and I was not disappointed. Lisa had this almost childlike quality about her: the way she talked, the big huge smile she had on her face almost the entire time, the way she moved…hard to explain but she just seemed so…pure and sweet. Her voice was stunning;clear and warm and always on key. She is truly talented. She played a variety of instruments too: the banjo, a type of accordion and other instruments I’d never seen before! I found out while she was playing that I was allowed to take pictures; too bad I didn’t know, all I had was my cell phone so I took some pics and video clips with it (ahem, yes, me with a cell phone, you thought that would never happen, right?)!
The video clips weren’t great but I’ve found these on Youtube from that evening: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jJvSFD0zvdA&feature=related, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3_9sb0JNsk0&feature=related, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nSaUG5_wq9o. I was in the corner right in front of the drummer; too bad it’s so dark there, maybe I could have seen myself were it not! There is nothing that makes me feel more alive than listening to a concert really apart from when I used to sing on stage myself. I had a big smile on my face the whole time; she gave me goose bumps it was so beautiful. I’m so glad I went, it was worth it!
After the show I asked Keira whether she thought it was safe for me to walk to the bus stop on my own (it was 11:00 p.m.) and she said yes, for sure, so I did! The walk up was so much fun! I really wished I was with a friend then as the streets were so alive with people everywhere having fun! Galway is such a vibrant and colourful place. I really hope to live there at some point during the year. I don’t have to stay in Dublin the whole time…”I am free”…