One thing that myself and the lads have noticed over the past nine or so years of playing together is the genuine connections that can be built up with audience members simply by playing music.
Two instances in particular stand out.
Let me set the scene: before we were even established as a legitimate band or had an album we played sessions around the coast of County Clare where we live. We played for tour groups and locals, banquets and Stag parties so we would meet a vast array of characters and couples.
In 2016 on our 3rd tour of the U.S. a couple approached us before playing a Theatre gig somewhere in the Mid-West of America. They told us a story of how they had visited Ireland in 2011 and wondered into a random pub in Doolin County Clare after trekking for the day around the Cliffs of Moher. They said it was very quiet that night with just themselves and a few locals in the bar. As it turned out, we were playing in the corner and they tell of how we ended up chatting to them for quite a while and playing a few tunes for them. It was only after a bit of chatting that they told us that they had gotten engaged that afternoon on the Cliffs and that our music completed the day for them. We thought it was nice thing to say but little did we know how much more our music would intertwine with their lives.
They went on to tell us of how they tracked our progress as a band and bought our albums online as each came out. They were fond of one track in particular, “The Last Waltz”. They chose to walk down the aisle too it on their wedding day…
After a year or so they had gotten to see us a festival but didn’t get a chance to come and say hello. But here we were in their small home town in the Mid-West and they only had a 4 minute car journey to come and see us.
They then looked at each other, looked back at us and said the week they found out we were playing in their home town was the same week they found out they were going to have their first child.
This story had us dumbfounded. How could this all have been going on for years without us even knowing these people? There had been a connection built not through words but one that stemmed seamlessly over the year through the music. It was an amazing moment for us as a band. We hadn’t realised how our music had such an effect and spread over the years.
That night we had to tell the story to the audience. They were all as enamoured with the couple as we were. We asked them both up onto the stage. We played them “The Last Waltz” and they danced as if no one was watching.