Alan planning to reach larger audience with ‘Raglan Road’

Already a professional musician – as a classically trained clarinet player with the Irish Defence Forces – Alan Lawlor aspires to have a larger audience enjoy his work and, building towards that, has released his version of the classic, ‘Raglan Road’.

A multi-instrumentalist, Alan, who is from Castletown Geoghegan, is a sought after singer and performer, who is proficient in the guitar, bodhrán, saxophone and tin whistle.

He also has a huge interest in folk music and collecting songs, he told the Westmeath Examiner: “I’m always looking out for songs to collect, and I make my own as well, and with something like Raglan Road, like every other artist, I try to put my own stamp on it and hope that it resonates with audiences.”

Alan said that it was no surprise that last year Raglan Road was voted Ireland’s Favourite Folk Song on the RTÉ TV series of the same name. “It’s so well written and married with the tune of The Dawning Of The Day by Luke Kelly, it’s such a superb song.”

The mixing and mastering for Alan’s version of the song were done at Roseland Studios in Moate, and he had Aidan Guilfoyle (piano, string bass and synth) and Seamus Cullinane on backing vocals as support.

It was released on November 17 last, and he is working on a video to accompany it. “The idea is to put it out with photos of people at Christmas last year and draw a comparison, because the last line is ‘on quiet streets’ and it would work up to that with the imagery, a reflection of Christmas last year, as opposed to what it’s going to be this year.

“It’s about creating awareness of my songs as well, and hopefully it’s emotive enough, with the imagery, that people like my version of it. It’s another building block towards getting more recognition.”

Alan had recorded the song some time ago, and he decided to release it to mark Luke Kelly’s 80th birthday (November 16).

In 2011 and 2012, Alan appeared on the first series of ‘The Voice of Ireland’, where he was mentored by Sharon Corr and Don Mescall, (songwriter and producer).

During his time on the show, Alan received numerous testimonials and compliments on his singing abilities from Kian Egan of Westlife, Bressie, Brian Kennedy and Sharon Corr. Don Mescall said: “I’ve been around singers for a long time and I think you are world class.”

Over the last 12 months, Alan has released three music videos – all of which have racked up tens of thousands of views online: ‘The Bravest’ – is a tribute to the firefighters of 9/11, which has been viewed in excess of 100,000 times and has been shared across the world. ‘Sam Hall’ and ‘John O Dreams’ – both of which have been viewed some 50,000 times and have repeatedly been aired on SKY 389 on the ‘Hot Country’ television show.

Alan recently appeared on TG4’s ‘Opry an Luir’, where he accompanied TR Dallas as a guitar player and backing vocalist.

Listen to Alan's music on his Facebook page.

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