2016 marks the centenary of The Easter Uprising, the event that saw the birth of the Irish Republic. By way of celebration and commemoration, Dublin’s Damien Dempsey has recorded his unique eighth LP, No Force on Earth.
Resulting in 500 deaths and countless injuries, The Easter Rising of 1916 was a turning point, eventually leading to The Republic’s separation from the UK.
The British response to the events was controversial, resulting in many civilian deaths and scarring the relationship between the two countries permanently. The record itself combines classic folk songs from the period with original compositions, all centred around this overarching theme.
Amongst the original compositions is Black Bank Folk, a song that is particularly personal. “It’s about my great aunt Jenny, or Jinny as she was known,” says Damien. Jinny was at the centre of the uprising, so it’s important to him that her story is heard.
Born in poverty stricken Dublin in the 70’s, Dempsey has a musical outlook profoundly shaped by the traditional working class music he was exposed to as a child. He’s widely considered to be the next generation of Irish folk legends and is renowned for his searingly intimate live shows – though thus far they have been restricted to Irish audiences.
This autumn his No Force on Earth Tour passes through Leicester with a show at Firebug. Expect a very personal performance of this intensely emotional record.
Catch Damien Dempsey at Firebug on 19th October.