Fresh breeze, incredible heart.
Have you ever felt nostalgic, with a cool head, in the wind, thinking about life, with a smile the size of the world? We’re in that mood today. We took our bikes, pedalled through the good weather of Lisbon and listened to new, good and inspiring music.
From Cork, Ireland, to the World, meet Colum Sheehan and Seán Ó Faoláin and a song that will pull you up: “Halcyon Days (ESP)”.
It’s a few hours between Ireland and France, but music cuts through barriers and turns what seems impossible into a miracle. The song was recorded between Rennes and Cork and Colum is the real one-man-show entertainer of this journey, with Seán producing all the Irishman’s creativity in an excellent way.
And it’s between a powerful and very irreverent voice, which seems to tell us a story, that we pay attention to every detail of Colum’s music: it’s different, fresh and beautiful. The instrumentation fits in like perfection. Almost like a jigsaw puzzle, you feel like you’ve fitted all the pieces into the right place.
You wouldn’t expect anything else: the song talks about the artist’s adolescence – and all the episodes we’ve experienced. Be it love crises, doubts about who we are, where we are, where we’re going, or even more basic problems like what we’re going to eat or where we’re going to walk that very day. We were free, light and adventurous and Halcyon Days shows us exactly that: happiness, discovery, adventure, race, belief and ambition.
We liked Colum so much that we came across him on the Internet. Stay with him:
[WtMM] Who is Colum Sheehan and how did the project come along?
[Colum Sheehan] Before embarking on this solo project, I played with an Irish band ‘Bordeaux’ for several years with long-time musical collaborators Sean Ó Faoláin and Julie Harrington. During this time, we recorded two singles in Wavefield Studios, just outside the beautiful coastal town of Clonakilty in Cork. These songs were featured on the 2020 compilation album ‘This Is Who We Are: Longwave Music Volume 1’. From there, my love of languages and culture brought me to live in Argentina and then France before landing in London town in 2022. There, with the support of my label Longwave Music, my musical project evolved into a solo project.
These two first songs ‘Not Sentimental’ and ‘Halcyon Days (ESP)’ from my new solo project were recorded in my hometown of Cork, Ireland and produced by multi-instrumentalist, Seán Ó Faoláin just outside the beautiful town of Kinsale, West Cork. Halcyon Days features dissonant piano chords and upfront deep vocals enveloped by a groovy funk-inspired bassline. This song takes a look back at the halcyon days of teenage years in Ireland, filled with love, loss and misspent youth. Tenderness meets texture in ‘Not Sentimental’, as heartfelt vocals are blended with a punchy bassline and use of space invites the listener in. A love song with a dose of regret and honesty.
What are your biggest inspirations?
My biggest inspirations tend to come from folk or rock. Nowadays you’ve got Mac Demarco, but as a child I was listening to my Dad’s Tim Buckley and Nick Drake records with a few odd punks like The Clash thrown in there too. I like the stripped back nature of singer songwriters style, but I generally look for something on their music that adds that extra bit of spice, whether that be Mac’s unique recording techniques and humour, Nick Drake’s loungy voice and string heavy influence or the three-chord-trick with an attitude that the Clash offered.
With who would you love to collaborate and why?
Lianne La Havas. She’s an artist I’ve grown to appreciate greatly in the last few years because of her incredible vocal range and control, her bossa nova guitar style and her Caribbean/Greek roots which create a beautiful concoction of
soulful music. Seeing her in full flow is a sight to behold and I’d love to play alongside her one day.
What are you listening to nowadays?
Nowadays I’m listening to a mix of up and coming as well as more established artists. Firstly on the up and coming side of things, there’s a London artist (now based in Melbourne) called Eleni Drake who’s been blowing me away over the past year or two with her cool laid back indie rock vibes. There’s a Brazilian band called ‘cajupitanga’ I’ve become obsessed with over the last few months. Their previous album ‘Tradição / Tradução’ is a masterpiece, filled with stripped back bossa nova guitar and experimental electronic aspects. A final artist I love is Pomme, French singer-songwriter that just dropped her best record yet, ‘consolation’. Her melancholic vocals and bare, raw instrumentation are gripping.
Where can we see you guys live at this time?
We’re working on an EP to be released in the summer of 2023 and will be gigging around London post release.
In one word, how would you describe the project?
From step to step to the natural conquest of the World: “Halcyon Days” is a different and irreverent music, which fits perfectly with Colum Sheehan. An artist to watch out for in the future.