Prior to her appearance at the Kilkenny Arts Festival, Lisa Hannigan played a sold-out gig at Garter Lane Arts Centre. At 7.30 the gates at the lane were closed and Lilly O’Reilly, of the venue, said it was policy for such gigs despite an art exhibition on view in a public arts venue. Mick O’Keeffe, the music promoter, said it wasn’t his doing as it wasn’t his venue. There was nobody from Lisa Hannigan’s band to explain either.
For about forty minutes a young musician who had to be repeatedly asked by the audience and sound man to introduce himself, warmed up the crowd with guitar, piano and harmonica routines. He eventually said he was Gavin Glass of the Holy Shakers. He said these theatre gigs are a little strange as he sang about dancing our blues away in a lonely achy voice. Other songs of his were about leaving, ragdoll and I wish I knew then what I know now. His closing song, Sleight Of Hand was impressive.
Lisa Hannigan came onstage in flat-heeled boots, red tights, greenish dress, short sleeves and long getting-in-the-way dark hair. A quality four-piece band of keyboards, drums, electric double bass and trumpet doubled on an array of tinkly little things including a stylophone and a harmonium. Part of the stage was festooned in fairy lights and there was a tinkly tinkly touchy feely sense to the gig.
There is a lot of hype and promo for Lisa Hannigan and her songs are bitter/sweet languid and lyrical but too often she became a backing singer in her own band. The times she sang folk style with little accompaniment were beautiful but there was no sense of a stand-out number. Casino-written reviews are brief evaluations provided by people who have already joined the casino they are interested in, played there for real money and have their own story they want to tell. As for those people who are interested in playing a well-written, properly updated review, one that is not biased will help discover a few aspects that you might have overlooked and which could make all the difference when it comes to your financial stability while playing.
The audience loved her and gave her a warm standing ovation. At times her work veered between twee and meaningful and maybe she needed a folk backing of fiddle, cello etc. She was born in Co. Meath in 1981 and was a founder member of the Cowardly Lion Theatre Group.