Finbar Furey who will be appearing at Derry’s Millennium Forum on Saturday, May 10 has left his mark on the music of Ireland for more than four decades.
As the lead singer, banjo and uillean pipes player for The Fureys, a group he shared with his brothers Eddie, Paul and George he helped to guide the evolution of Ireland’s traditional music. Since leaving the band to pursue a solo career in 1995, Furey has continued to attract attention with his gutsy approach to the music of the Emerald Isle.
Joining up as a duo with his brother Eddie in the late 60’s, the two were soon playing in folk music clubs, colleges and universities throughout Great Britain and Europe. One formative change came when they were invited to be the opening act for the Clancy Brothers’ tour of the United States in 1969. The enthusiastic response they elicited resulted in them becoming headliners.
In 1978 The Fureys and Davey Arthur were formed with Paul and George joining their older brothers along with Davey. In 1995, Furey left the group to launch a solo career and his reputation as a solo artist has increased with every performance. He has toured extensively in Britain, Australia and Europe, treating audiences to evenings of pure Irish magic, great music, good humour, and the charm and sparkling wit associated with one of Ireland’s great raconteurs. From his early folk days in the late 60’s to a more contemporary, raw and emotional style today, his music is determined, irresistibly intriguing and reflective and re-affirms his status as one of our great folk heroes.
This year sees the release of a great new album, ‘Colours’ featuring new self penned songs such as ‘Walking with my Love’, a duet with Mary Black and ‘Rivers of Steel’ in which he duets with Shayne Ward. There are some golden oldies revisited there too – The Old Man, Dan O’Hara and Dylan’s ‘Blowin’ in the Wind.’