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In Conversation with Brian Kennedy

2020-07-26

In Conversation with Brian Kennedy

With “a voice to charm the angels,” Brian survived a childhood on the infamous Falls Road, West Belfast, at the height of its hellish history against all the odds to carve an extraordinary career in music. “It’s a miracle that I survived my childhood and became a singer really, given where and how my life started, but somehow my voice had other plans and saved me in the end." That voice set him on a course that changed his life forever.

From harmonizing with ambulance sirens as a child to finally overcoming stage fright, his gradual ascent was nothing short of incredible. He busked on the dangerous streets of his hometown whatever the political climate until a sudden escape to London at 18 where he survived the only way he knew how. He sang unaccompanied in the underground stations and outside the Dominion Theatre, sometimes literally in order to eat and until he finally saved up enough money for a guitar. Soon thereafter, Brian was discovered by British entrepreneur/manager Simon Fuller.

Brian is first and foremost a live performer and songwriter declaring “music is my lifeblood.”  His constant touring from Ireland and the UK to Australia, Europe, Asia and the USA, including the major global festivals, has resulted in an ever-growing international fan base, over a phenomenal three-decade career.

Brian was the very first international artist to record the now famous uplifting anthem “You Raise Me Up” by Secret Garden in 2001, today one of his most popular signature songs.  His heart-wrenching LIVE performance of “You Raise Me Up” at the funeral of Irish football legend George Best was released as a single and earned him a spot in the top 5 of the UK charts.  This song has since been recorded by over 1,000 artists.  

In October of 2018 Brian had a nine-hour operation that was life changing and in recovery he returned to the stage a mere two weeks after leaving hospital to sing at a fundraiser for a friend.

In June 2019 Brian completed a five-month chemotherapy chapter and was given the all clear…cancer free!  During his period of healing, he wrote new songs which reflect his incredible journey. The result: the poignant and inspiring EP aptly entitled “Recovery.” He performed these new songs for the first time at the 2019 Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Brian recorded and co-wrote the song “Things Are Gonna Change” with Boy George (released April, 2020).

It has long been a desire of Brian’s to perform at New York’s famed Carnegie Hall.  He realized that dream on December 9, 2019 and had the 3,000 plus standing-room-only crowd in the palm of his hand as they sang along with him.

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