Award winner Foy Vance @ Róisín Dubh

THE NORTHERN Irish music scene is at its healthiest and most creative at any time since the 1970s, and one of its leading lights may well be Foy Vance.

The Bangor born vocalist and songwriter recently beat off such heavyweight competition as And So I Watch You From Afar, Two Door Cinema Club, and Gary Lightbody’s country outfit Tired Pony, to scoop the Northern Ireland Music Prize for Album of the Year with his current release Joy Of Nothing.

The announcement comes just ahead of the Ulsterman’s Irish tour which takes in Galway’s Róisín Dubh on Friday December 6 at 9pm.

Though born in County Down, Vance spent much of his childhood with his father, a preacher, in Oklahoma, eventually travelling to the South, where he absorbed the region’s rich musical traditions. All this would inform his own songwriting which he began when he returned to Ireland some years later.

Since then he has released a number of albums and toured with Bonnie Raitt (who does backing vocals on Joy Of Nothing’s ‘You and I’ ), Michael Kiwanuka, Snow Patrol, and Ed Sheeran. Vance also scored Oscar-winning short-film The Shore with David Holmes, who collaborated with Vance on his 2012 Melrose EP.

Tickets are available at www.roisindubh.net, the Ticket Desk at OMG, Shop Street (formerly Zhivago ), and The Róisín Dubh.

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