The return of Declan O’Rourke

DECLAN O’ROURKE been off the scene for the last three years but April saw him return in strong form with his third album Mag Pai Zai, and this month he is coming to play Galway.

Declan O’Rourke plays the Róisín Dubh on Saturday May 28 at 9pm and by all accounts the Dublin born songwriter, who has strong Galway connections, is in more confidently mood than ever before.

With his 2005 debut Since Kyabram, O’Rourke established himself as a singer-songwriter head and shoulders above his peers, in what is an already over-crowded genre. The album struck a chord with the public and drew praise from Paul Weller and Eddie Reader.

However second album Big Bad Beautiful World was a disappointment. “I was having fun, for sure,” said Declan, looking back on the record, “but the songs definitely weren’t built as solidly as they were on the first album, and as they are on the new one.”

The songs on Mag Pai Zai came in a flourish following an 18 month bout of writer’s block. “I wrote more songs in 2009 than I ever did in any other year,” he said. “Practically all the songs on Mag Pai Zai came from that burst of songwriting. If it weren’t my own record, I’d say it blows the other two albums out of the water.”

Tickets are available from the Róisín Dubh and www.roisindubh.net

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