Nell's presents

Brian Kennedy

Thursday 31st October

Tickets £20   | Doors 19:30

Brian Kennedy 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. In his own words he says, “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 whole life forever.

From harmonising 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 weather until a sudden escape to London, when only 18 saw him surviving in 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. He lived in various illegal squats before eventually being discovered by the now legendary Svengali Simon Fuller- [Pop Idol, Annie Lennox, The Spice Girls.]

Brian is first and foremost a live performer and songwriter. As he bluntly puts it himself, “Music is my lifeblood.”His constant touring from Ireland and the UK to Australia, Germany and the USA, including the major global festivals, has resulted in an ever-growing international fan base the old fashioned way, over a phenomenal twenty-five year career on the rollercoaster ride that is the unpredictable music industry.

His work with Van Morrison has been well documented. The Belfast legend invited Brian to a rehearsal one day that resulted in him being featured as guest lead singer on the now unforgettable ‘Blues & Soul Revue’.  Courtesy of Van’s continuing mentoring and generosity, Brian ended up sharing vocal duties on stages across the globe over a six-year period with Morrison and a breathtaking cast of some of the greatest artists in history: Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan, Ray Charles and John Lee Hooker to name but a few. Madison Square Gardens was a far cry from the Falls Road. That unique Irish voice can be heard harmonising and answering Van on five of his major hit albums including “A Night In San Francisco” to “Days Like This”.

As if that wasn’t impressive enough, you might be less familiar with Brian’s impromptu performances with Stevie Wonder at Ronnie Scotts in London. Incredibly and proudly he is one of only a few to have also sung with the late legendary Jeff Buckley at Sin-É in New York.