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MUSIC Mary Coughlan to play in Ballina

Going Out
Galway’s favourite fiery redhead, Mary Coughlan will perform in Brennan’s Lane later this month.

Mary Coughlan to play in Ballina

Local scene
Henry McGlade

Galway’s favourite fiery redhead, Mary Coughlan, famed for her heartfelt delivery of blues, jazz and folk, will perform in Brennan’s Lane on Thursday, March 25. It’s quite the crowd-pulling coup for the Ballina venue, already a firm favourite among locals and visitors alike.
It would be impossible to summarise the volumes of material that have been written about Coughlan; her singing, her character and her views on life have made her a household name in Ireland and beyond. 
A review of in the Irish Times encapsulated her thus: “Ireland has never produced a singer quite like Mary Coughlan. She emerged in 1986 seemingly from nowhere and without any preliminaries, but already with a stagecraft and vocal sophistication of a veteran, singing new songs and blues songs with one of those voices that tingles the mind with an instant recognition of something very special.”
Mary Coughlan has been called Ireland’s answer to Peggy Lee, while her husky gin-soaked voice has been compared to Billie Holiday. Famous songwriters have queued up to write for her, including Elvis Costello, Shane McGowan, Jimmy MacCarthy, Kirsty McColl and Bono (although she never recorded his song).
Twenty four years on the music scene is a long time, but Coughlan, like a good wine, seems to gets better with age. Her most recent album, ‘The House of Ill Repute’ (2008) has been hailed by critics as her best yet.
Tickets for the show in Brennan’s Yard (€15 each) are limited. They can be purchased from the venue or by calling 096 74044.

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