A very special guest arrives to Our Lady’s Bower, Athlone next week when Liam O’Maonlai plays in concert in the school. Next Wednesday, October 15, Liam will take to the stage at 6pm, as part of the school’s Arts Week celebrations.
Best known as the Hothouse Flowers’ frontman, Liam O’Maonlai has more recently carved out a successful solo career as a musician, songwriter, and artist. Liam grew up surrounded by music, learning to play piano and to sing in his native Irish at an early age. In 1981 he won an all-Ireland award for under 18 bodhran playing, and has received many awards as a tin whistle and piano player, dancer, and singer over the years.
In 1985 he and Fiachna O Braonain put together a rhythm and blues group with all songs written in Irish. This was the beginning of the Hothouse Flowers, which went on to be one of Ireland’s most successful rock bands, releasing seven albums.
However Liam remained faithful to his traditional roots. In 2005 he released the album Rian with his close friend, renowned producer John Reynolds. He travelled to Mali in 2006 and 2007 where he played at the Desert festival with uileann piper Paddy Keenan and participated in the making of a documentary. Both men played with musicians from the region, well-known artists to local tribes people. Liam has also travelled extensively in Australia, Japan, America, Europe, Scandinavia, Morocco, and India, and continues to play with traditional players wherever he travels.
Tickets for next week’s Liam O Maonlai concert at Our Lady’s Bower, Athlone are now on sale from Musicworld, Athlone at a cost of €15. A limited number of tickets will also be available at the door on the night.