INTIMATE David Hope’s new album visits themes of grief and loss, and the beauty of life. Pic: MrsRedHead Photography
Singer David Hope to be joined by SAL for album launch
Singer-songwriter David Hope is launching his fifth studio album with a special gig at the Clew Bay Hotel, Westport, this Sunday, September 11.
Both lyrically and musically this is the deepest dive Hope has taken into his songwriting and recording, capturing a mix of raw emotional acoustic tracks and full-band epics.
Clare-born Hope now lives in Castlebar, and he is no stranger to Westport either. A leading artist with local production company, The Electric Cave Production, he has performed at different venues around the town since 2007, including the main stage of the Westport Folk and Bluegrass Festival.
“This new album is called ‘…and the Sea’,” Hope explains, “and although it has a lot to do with ‘The Old man…’, specifically my old man and less so Hemingway. This album is largely my attempt to find the words to deal with the loss of my father.
“A man I loved ‘to the moon and back’ and respected deeply. He was every bit as much my Dad as he was my best friend; so letting go and saying goodbye was and is terribly hard. While in the effort to find the words to express my grief and love for him, I also found the words to finally write a song about my home county of Clare. The song ‘Lovers Leap’ is the type of song which he was always encouraging me to write. I also found words which I’d long tucked away: ‘I hope you find your way back home’ – a farewell refrain to my Mayo grandmother, Maggie King.
“While this album is deeply personal, and inevitably sad at points, I do hope it is equally universal in the sense that if we are lucky, we’ll get to live long enough to say goodbye to those we love. This is the ultimate beauty and tragedy of life.”
In July 2019, October 2019 and February 2020, Hope recorded with producer Christian Best at Monique Studios, Midleton, Cork. They were joined some of Ireland and Switzerland’s finest musicians: From Switzerland, Steffi Hess on double bass and vocals; Kealan Kenny on electric guitar, and Darragh Keary on piano and keys. Cork bassist Chris McCarthy also makes an appearance on the album, with Christian Best contributing drums and percussion, as he did on the pairs previous collaboration Hope’s 2017 album ‘Tough Love’ .
Special guest at the Clew Bay Hotel launch will be Cork-based singer-songwriter SAL (Sara Ryan). Named New Artist of the Year at the 2017 Irish Folk Awards. Earlier this year, Hotpress deemed her a ‘homegrown act primed for a major breakthrough: “Following the release of her debut album Breathe in late 2019, she’s taken the challenges of the last two years in her stride – re-introducing herself under a brand new moniker, signing her first publishing deal with Atlantic Songs, and fitting in some unforgettable gigs along the way. With a brand new sound under her belt, stay tuned for big things in 2022.”
The Clew Bay Hotel, Sunday, September 11; doors, 7:30pm. Admission, €10.