Friday, October 15, 2010
Phil Coulter at the West County Ennis
I am listening to Phil Coulter being interviewed by Ivan Yates on the radio and I am reminded that I saw him back in July at the West County Hotel, Ennis.
Looking very dapper in a selection of natty suits, I was reminded of what an impressive back catalogue he has. The hotel ballroom is a tricky venue to amplify particularly with dance function going on in other half and my immediate impression were that the piano sounded uneven and the piano solos were not the highlight of the evening. A strength of the performance was his lovely spoken introductions and a highlight was the recitation of a letter of American Civil War soldier to his wife to the Ashokan Farewell (played I think by young fiddle player Felim McGinty?) There was no doubting the resonance with the captive audience particularly in 'Scorn not his Simplicity. Who could forget the late Joseph Locke's rendition of the Town I Loved So Well on the Late Late Show many years ago. An eclectic playlist included a Sean O Riada film music medley segued by a Jimmy Durante Tin Pan Alley number performed in appropriate voice. Brilliant!
Phil was joined on stage by wife Geraldine Brannigan looking much the same as when she was last on our screens ages ago complete with Farah Fawcett hairdo for a nostalgic dance band set.
I enjoyed this very well honed set and I am relieved his Tranquility piano music album seems no longer to be a staple of restaurant background music tracks