Tuesday, 18th September 2018
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It was stranding room only when Billy Roche brought his neat band and his red guitar to the Wexford Arts Centre last week. A small number of recent had suggested tat Billy’s success as a writer and playwright had been the music scene’s loss, s the Red Guitar Tour give us a chance to make up for lost time.

Roche’s unique style no only stems from his expressive singing voice but his open-tuned guitar technique enables him to blend traditional fold elements with touches of sixties/seventies psychelelia and eastern overtones. Added to his already established deft way with words he has now created a body of finely-wrought songs that held the audience spellbound throughout.

Billy was aided and abetted by long term Roach B and sidekick Mike Odlum on bass and keyboards and comparative newbie Pete McCamley on percussion and anything else that came to hand. you might expect Billy’s wit and some inter-band banter added to the gaiety of the occasion as did some chat about the latest football scores.

But there was also much serious work to be done. "Julia" has a delicate seventies prog-folk feel while the murder ballad "Three Lovely Ladies" was delivered with appropriate aplomb and jus a little menace. "On The Run" had echoes of Mike Heron’s of Incredible String Band fame. "Lost" is a plaintive song that evoked memories of Al Stewart and benefited from Odlum’s subtle piano contributions, and "Yearning" left space for that droning open-tuning guitar style too.

You can catch the band in Waterford on Saturday 19th My when they play St. Patrick’s Gateway. Tickets 20 euro + booking fee.

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    Even though the weather Gods didn’t exactly play ball over the weekend it doesn’t take away from the fact that this years Waterford Harvest Festival was yet again another wonderful success. It was great to see the streets of the centre of the city so beautifully and thoughtfully decked out. The various food stalls offering tastes from all over were great to wander around. The information and background that each of the stall holders were able to give on the provenance of their food was really interesting an …

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