INTERVIEW: Paddy Nash returns with new solo album

'Gate Fever' will be released on Friday 2nd June

Singer-songwriter Paddy Nash returns with a new album following up from the successful 2015 release ‘Laughter & Love’.

This time however Paddy revisits his Folk roots without his seven strong stomping ensemble ‘The Happy Enchiladas’ for his new solo album ‘Gate Fever’.

We caught up with Paddy and started by asking him where the title of the new album came from. “Gate Fever is what some prisoners experience when they’re nearing the end of their sentence” explained Paddy.

“I discovered the term through my work in Magilligan as Musician in Residence. The expression really appealed to me. It’s the fear of the unknown, the fear of starting over again. Most of us are prisoners to something or other and I tried to convey that in the songs on the album.”

Paddy explained why he decided to return to his roots with the new album: “I just started having all these ideas for songs. I don’t know what triggered it, maybe getting older and seeing the world from a different perspective.

“I worked really hard on the lyrics from the start. I kind of knew they were a bit different from my usual satirical sarcastic fayre. I also felt that I wanted to try something new. I felt it was time to get out of my comfort zone away from the security of the band.”

“It was recorded in Paul Casey’s Cable Junction Studios in Derry with Paul, myself and Eddie O’Donnell on Production duties. We did the whole thing in six days. Diane sang some backing vocals, Eddie played piano and guitar. Nick Scott came down for a day to play some Double Bass, Liam Bradley added percussion then Paul worked his socks off on the mixing and mastering. It was a highly enjoyable process for me.”

Paddy has long been a huge supporter of the local music scene and has often played a key role in its development. For the new album he called upon the talents of local singer-songwriter Rebecca Mulhern to complete the artwork. “She’s’ a wonderful artist, songwriter, musician and photographer. She’ll probably end up running NASA or something.”

Throughout his career, his music has been heavily influenced by the political landscape. This current climate must give the local musician a lot of material. “Too much material unfortunately” he admits. “I despair, I really do. It seems like the worst kind of people are in power almost everywhere and they’re being propped up by other ‘would-be’s if they could be’s’; all driven by greed for power, money and ego.

“In a world were ‘fake’ seems to be the new ‘real’ it really does behove artists of all sorts to counter the shit that occurs. I hope I reflect what’s good in the world too because I see it in the ordinary things, the people I meet and the things we do.”

But it’s his experiences growing up which has influenced him most. “I’m the youngest in a family of 10 from Creggan. Growing up I was exposed not only to all kinds of fantastic music but to great characters as well.

“I am also blessed with a vivid memory and an overactive imagination so that was a perfect starting point. I’ve been lucky to have met some wonderful mentors down the years who encouraged my writing and opened up a new world full of master songwriters and musicians.”

And where can you see Paddy next? “I’m planning to tour southern Ireland this October and November and also England early 2018. I will also be doing an intimate launch up with the good people of Glasgowbury on the 18th June, and then I’m off to Glastonbury for an appearance at the Left Field stage. I have some shows in Derry over the summer including the Cottage Sessions on the 29th July.”

The new album ‘Gate Fever’ will be released on Friday 2nd June and you can download your copy here.

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