Brian Kennedy

Sea Church
Thu 22 Dec 2022
Doors: 8:30 pm

Brian Kennedy is one of Ireland’s most inspired and revered ambassadors of music. He is notonly a prolific songwriter but a master interpreter of lyrics as well, and audiences around the worldcontinue to praise his exceptional vocal talents. Originally from Belfast, Northern Ireland, the multi-platinum recording artist remains one of Ireland’s most popular singing stars.With “a voice to charm the angels,” Brian survived a childhood on the infamous Falls Road, WestBelfast, at the height of its hellish history against all the odds to carve an extraordinary career inmusic. “It’s a miracle that I survived my childhood and became a singer really, given where andhow my life started, but somehow my voice had other plans and saved me in the end." That voiceset him on a course that changed his life forever.From harmonizing with ambulance sirens as a child to finally overcoming stage fright, his gradualascent was nothing short of incredible. He busked on the dangerous streets of his hometown,whatever the political climate, until a sudden escape to London at 18 where he survived the onlyway he knew how. He sang unaccompanied in the underground stations and outside the DominionTheatre, sometimes literally in order to eat and until he finally saved up enough money for a guitar.Soon thereafter, Brian was discovered by British entrepreneur/manager Simon Fuller.Brian is first and foremost a live performer and songwriter declaring “music is my lifeblood.” Hisconstant touring from Ireland and the UK to Australia, Europe, Asia and the USA, including themajor global festivals, has resulted in an ever-growing international fan base, over a phenomenalthree-decade career.Spotted by Belfast legend Van Morrison, Brian was invited to a rehearsal one day which resulted inMorrison recruiting him to join his now unforgettable “Blues & Soul Revue” tour as guest leadsinger. Thanks to Van’s ongoing mentoring and generosity, Brian found himself sharing vocalduties on stages across the globe over a six-year period with Morrison and a breathtaking array ofsome of the greatest artists in history: Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Ray Charles and John Lee Hookerto name a few. Performing at Madison Square Garden in New York was a far cry from the FallsRoad. His unique voice can be heard harmonizing and answering Van on five of his major hitalbums including “A Night In San Francisco” and “Days Like This.”Throughout the relentless touring with Van Morrison, Brian somehow managed to maintain astream of chart-making albums. “A Better Man” (1996) and “Now That I Know What I Want” (1999),both went platinum at No.1 and earned him the awards of Irish Best Male Artist and Irish Best MaleAlbum, as did the highly acclaimed “Homebird” (2006) and cover album “Interpretations” (2008).Brian has done impromptu performances with Stevie Wonder at Ronnie Scotts in London and,incredibly and proudly, he is one of only a few to have also sung with the late legendary JeffBuckley at Sin-É in New York.Brian was the very first international artist to record the now famous uplifting anthem “You RaiseMe Up” by Secret Garden in 2001, today one of his most popular signature songs. His heart-wrenching LIVE performance of “You Raise Me Up” at the funeral of Irish football legend GeorgeBest was released as a single and earned him a spot in the top 5 of the UK charts. This song hassince been recorded by over 1,000 artists.Brian is a natural TV (The Voice-Ireland coach) and radio host (ClareFM) as well as lead performeron diverse international stages. From his role in Riverdance-On Broadway in New York (ninemonths/over 300 performances) to Eurovision 2006 in Athens, Brian also found time to write andpublish two fiction novels that were an instant success. He continues to receive many prestigious awards, including the 2019 West Belfast Legend Award, 2010 Ireland Meteor LifetimeAchievement Award for Music, and an even rarer Honorary Doctorate Degree of Letters by theUniversity of Ulster for his contribution to Literature and Arts.2016 found Brian busy in the studio recording a 32-track double CD “The Essential Collection”comprising all brand-new recordings from the past and present including a duet with Boy George.Brian maintains that “music is the language of emotion,” and after all his years performing andrecording with Van Morrison, he favors the live shows above all else. “Van always said you’re onlyas good as your last gig.”Also in 2016, Brian began a challenging journey with cancer and he cites singing and performingas the motivation for staying positive. “The gigs make everything worthwhile, the fans' supportmeans the world to me,” he said. “If anything, the diagnosis and treatment has given me greaterfocus and determination to get through it all. Music is the ultimate healer and my voice has neverlet me down.” The same year, Brian’s iconic album “A Better Man” turned 20 and what betterplace to celebrate than on stage doing what he loves best. He performed the entire album inDublin’s prestigious Vicar Street venue on October 13, 2016.In 2017, following a sell-out run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, he released the “Live at VicarStreet, Dublin” double CD and bonus DVD before heading to China for a tour with Secret Gardenwhere they had a huge hit with Brian performing “You Raise Me Up."Brian recorded his first ever collection of his most beloved Christmas songs with brand new,breath-taking arrangements for some old and new classic Christmas songs resulting in the 2018release of the album “Christmassy.”In October of 2018 Brian had a nine-hour operation that was life changing and in recovery hereturned to the stage a mere two weeks after leaving hospital to sing at a fundraiser for a friend.In June 2019 Brian completed a five-month chemotherapy chapter and was given the allclear…cancer free! During his period of healing, he wrote new songs which reflect his incrediblejourney. The result: the poignant and inspiring EP aptly entitled “Recovery.” He performed thesenew songs for the first time at the 2019 Edinburgh Fringe Festival.It has long been a desire of Brian’s to perform at New York’s famed Carnegie Hall. He realizedthat dream on December 9, 2019 and had the 3,000 plus SRO crowd in the palm of his hand asthey sang along with him.Brian recorded and co-wrote the song “Things Are Gonna Change” with Boy George (releasedApril, 2020).

Venue Info

Sea Church
Ballycotton, Co. Cork


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