Not only has renowned singer/songwriter Danny McGilloway earned a glowing reputation here in his hometown, he also has fans all over Europe and has just taken up an invitation for regular live slots in Germany.
Well-known in Irish folk music circles, Danny, from Ewing Street, has written over 200 songs during his career, performing far and wide as both a solo artist and an ex-member of well-known folk bands Thundering Down, Tansey’s Fancy, and Brig Union.
During his illustrious career, Danny has also shared the stage with many famous names, including The Dubliners, Frances Black, Christy Moore, Paddy Reilly, Dolores Keane and The Dublin City Ramblers. He also performed in Dublin alongside one of Ireland’s top songwriters, Pete St John, composer of the legendary ‘Fields of Athenry’.
An accomplished musician in his own right, the Derry man has played throughout Ireland, England and Scotland on numerous occasions. He also performed on the Channel Islands at the Jersey Irish Festival and Arrhus Festival, Denmark. Closer to home, Danny played the Mid-Ulster Folk Festival, with American blues singer, the late, great Johnny Silvo, who described the Derry musician’s voice as being like that of a “guardian of Heaven’s pearly gates!”
“Music has taken me all over and helped introduce me to people I’d never imagined I would meet,” says Danny. “I started playing folk music around 1983 and my first instrument was the mandolin - I just loved the sound of it! Then I went on to play the banjo, guitar, fiddle, whistle and bodhran.
“Some people are just born to entertain and love putting on a good show, but it takes time and experience to feel confident as a performer. After my first gig I went home and almost never went out again! But after some encouragement from a friend, I eventually returned to the stage. After a while you start to tap into the belief and confidence you have when playing at home and that really comes across to the audience. It’s been wonderful but not something I would necessarily recommend to people just starting out in the business!”
In February past, Danny was invited to Germany to play in an Irish club near Munich with excellent standing. There he played three sell-out nights in a row. Now Danny has been invited to go out regularly, and he’s delighted to have said yes.
Back at home, Danny’s been working on some of his own material with a view to entering the recording studio. With the City of Culture year only months away, as well as the Fleadh, Danny’s sure to find himself busy and in demand. Those with a love of live music can be assured of a superb night’s entertainment if Danny McGilloway takes to the stage!