TWO IRISH cultural phenomena celebrate their 40th birthday this year, and they celebrate it together when Stockton's Wing play this month's Galway International Arts Festival.
Throughout the 1980s Stockton's Wing were one of Ireland's most popular bands through their combination of Irish trad, pop, and rock; singles like 'Walk Away' and the haunting 'Beautiful Affair'; and a following built up through relentless gigging, and performances at festivals up and down the country. Even if you do not know their music, you have heard it without realising it. Listen to the theme-tune of Joe Duffy's Liveline - that's SW's 'Over The Moor'.
As part of their Irish tour, the band - featuring long-term members Mike Hanrahan (vocals/guitar ), Paul Roche (flute/tin whistle ), Steve Cooney (guitar/bass/didgeridoo ) and Tommy Hayes (percussion/bodhrán/spoons ), along with Tara Breen (fiddle ) and Karol Lynch (banjo/mandolin ) - play Monroe's Live on Thursday July 20 at 8pm as part of GIAF 2017.
They originally called it a day in 1995 but have regrouped from time to time. Their current return has already seen a successful run of gigs at Temple Bar TradFest 2016 and a headline show at the fleadh in Ennis. Mike Hanrahan, who has been at the helm of the band at various stages over the last 40 years, said:
“I am so delighted to be back with Stocktons Wing playing the music that shaped my earlier life and career. We were adventurers in every sense - with no boundaries and no pressures. We created a new innovative sound and our gigs were always happy and energetic occasions. It’s so good to be back on stage with Steve, Tommy, and Paul again."