Sunday, January 26, 2014

Seannie Foy "Further Down That Rocky Road"

(Foot Tapping Records 2006)

Red Hot Rockin' Blues
All The Time
Big River
20th Century Boy
Boppin' Bonnie
Maybe Baby
My Brand Of Blues
Bird Doggin'
One Hand Loose
I Got A Woman
Goodbye Goodbye 

Seannie Foy! Ultra talented and ultra elusive too. Google searches come back with very little info on the man and I've only met him once during my multiple excursions to rockin' shows in Dublin. In the early to mid 1980s he was the charismatic and exceedingly suave front-man of Ireland's pioneering rockabilly outfit Those Handsome Devils. The Devils received much critical acclaim at the time with sold out shows, TV appearances, full page spreads in national newspapers and their debut single Hep Bop/Boy Meets Girl became single of the week on the nation's biggest pop and rock radio station. Then Those Handsome Devils seemed to disappear almost overnight. Their musical output is very rare and much sought after but Foy himself continued to work in various musical mediums and his heart stayed true to his rockabilly roots as can be witnessed on this his debut solo album.

Further Down That Rocky Road sees Seanie Foy paying tribute to the artists that have influenced him through the years and he pays homage to these greats in his own inimitable style. Why this man is not internationally revered by the rockin' scene is a travesty. I suppose it's that elusiveness I mentioned earlier; just a select few know about him. Maybe that's more of a geographical factor than anything else. But I think all that is going to change and deservedly so. Backed up here by Darrel Higham on slap bass and Les Curtis on drums, this rhythm section is set alight by the extraordinary guitar talents of Foy and his vocals have that gravely Cochran appeal to them but with a richer deeper tone and unique vibrato. The music is for the most part straight up wild rockabilly but there's little inroads into blues and garage here and there as well. The production is pristinely clear and powerful whilst still maintaining a vintage vibe to it. The songs, although covers, are all given Foy's distinctive style. For example, the cover of Buddy Holly's Maybe Baby sounds NOTHING like the original and is an aural delight.

There will be another Seannie Foy album coming out soon featuring all self penned material but in the meantime, if you don't know his music or have given up on trying to find the all too rare Those Handsome Devils gems then you should get your hands on this and discover one of the true, thus far, unsung musical greats these shores have ever had to offer.

The O'Prez (2007)

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