I’ve been living in Springfield for 10 years now, I’m originally from Walkinstown but I’m well settled in Tallaght at this stage and I love the place I have to say.
It’s a brilliant place to live, I’m in The Square nearly everyday, running around the place, and I use the gym across the road.
It’s kind of like a little town within a town, it’s a nice quiet area as well and the community around here is very good, lovely people.
The way the media describe Tallaght sometimes is nowhere near the truth, you have to judge that for yourself, and you really have to be here to understand that. It’s a very multi cultural community as well and all the different nationalities get on, which is great.
Tallaght does have a bit of a stigma but I think that has died down a bit. I really love the place.
I’m the lead singer of a band called The Swing Cats and the rest of the guys in the band are Northsiders. They all used to come over to my house in Springfield to practice, in a backroom in the house I’d sound proofed, because Tallaght is easy for everyone to get to and I always claim it is the centre of the universe!
We would describe ourselves as a live Swing band with a difference, our set list is made up of the more uptempo hits from the swing dance era of the 1940’s and 1950’s.
Five years ago when we started The Swing Cats it was mainly to do weddings and corporate gigs and then three years ago we did our first headline show in the Button Factory.
We sold out that venue so we thought “lets do it again.”
The following year we released our first album which ended up being album of the month on RTE Radio 1 which was huge for us and a great honour as well to get recognition like that off the national broadcaster.
I used to work in Guinness’s but I quit in 2014 to really focus on the music and do it full time as a job.
I had turned 30 and had the house sorted and no kids so I thought I would give it a go.
It was a big move but thankfully it’s starting to work out at last.
Last year I become good friends with another Springfield man called Al Porter.
I used to see him going into the local Centra in his slippers and hat and I’d be thinking “who is this fella and what is he up to here?!”
He’d be talking to all the old women and making them laugh, he’s a serious character is Al!
We happened to bump into each other on the Anton Savage show on Today FM as he was doing a bit of comedy and we were the house band on the show.
He told us he was a very big fan of swing music, which I didn’t know at the time, and he said he’d love to do a show with us.
We did a joint headline gig together at the Fringe Festival last year, we were both out front, him telling jokes and me doing a bit of singing. He’s much better at singing than I am at telling jokes!
It went well and the Irish Times put it down as one of their theatrical highlights of the year, which none of us expected.
Following that we did The Late Late Show and a sold out show in Vicar Street.
Last month we switched on the Christmas lights on Grafton Street which was a massive honour as I’m a huge Christmas fan and to get to do that in front of 20,000 people was really special and something I’d love to do again.
This month we released our second album, it’s called “Afterdark” and the response to it so far has been excellent.
Next year we do our biggest show ever, on May 20th we play in the National Concert Hall with a 25 piece orchestra, which is something we’re all really looking forward to.
We play 70/80 weddings a year which helps us because every one we play we’re winning over a new audience.
People that come to our gigs already like us and know about us but most of the people we play to at weddings have never heard of us and if a wedding crowd like you by God they’ll let you know!
We’re not on a record label, we look after ourselves, the goal is to make it to the 3 Arena eventually.
I’m firmly of the belief that you have to make things happen yourself.
It drives me mad when people say “I’m just waiting to see what happens.”
You have to get off your ass and do it yourself, nobody is going to hand you anything in this life.
Nobody is going to knock on our door and offer us a record deal but we will keep working hard and doing everything we can to get where we want to be.