Damian finds his way to an intimate venue in Birmingham to watch one of his favourites
This Ulster troubadour now resides in Melbourne, many miles from his native Belfast.
So I always try and get along to see him on his annual visit to Brum and these days it’s usually the intimate setting of Kings Heath’s Kitchen Garden Cafe
On the dot of nine, Van Morrison’s “Moon Dance” fades and he appears and launches into the wonderful “Looking for James Joyce’s Grave”. Tonight though Andy has the company of the Merthyr Tydfil fan club choir, a half dozen or so brave souls that made the 230 round trip to see this artist. They know all the lyrics and accompany him on most of the songs.
Anybody who knows anything about this artist will know of his pedigree, having collaborated with Peter Gabriel and Sinead O’Connor. He also had a group called ALT with Liam O`Maoniai of the Hothouse Flowers and Tim Finn of Finn and Crowded House.
“Religious Persuasion” is next before we get a few tracks off his new album “How Things Are.” These include “Separation Street,” the tender, “You Got me At Hello” and “Band Of Gold,” follows before the first set ends with “Groovy Kind of Way”
A short break is followed by a few tracks off Andy’s new EP, “Baby That’s ok” and “Think of me like Summer” Another new track “Jessica Says” is shared before we get older songs “Promises Broken” and “Whole Thing,” with a dip back into the back catalogue.
Andy gives a shout out to Janice Long for airing the next track “Vision of you” on her late night show, and a request from me for the wonderful, heart wrenching “Last Day of Summer” is satisfied before the last couple of tracks “Shakespeare take my Hand” and “Samuel Beckett” finish up the second set.
There is a return for a welcome encore with another track from his new album “All It Does Is Rain” and finally he finishes with “Rembrandt Hat”
A wonderfully relaxed, intimate and joyful show from a magnificent singer / songwriter.
This was the last show on this tour so until he comes back next year, you could always invest in Andy’s latest offering “How Things Are” to while away the hours before his return.
The money will be well spent.