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Johnny returns to Galway after four-year absence

Singer/songwriter, Johnny McEvoy will make his first post-pandemic appearance in Galway this Sunday, February 11, when he’ll entertain his audience with an evening of songs and stories.

McEvoy, who was born in Banagher, County Offaly, and lives in Greystone, County Wicklow, has strong connections to Galway as both his parents hailed from the east of the county – his mother Emily, née Ryan, was from Clonfert and his father Jack was from outside Eyrecourt.

His memories of childhood include many visits to meet relations in Galway but Johnny McEvoy has such a strong fan base nationwide that after 60 years of being in the music business, that he could be at home anywhere in the country.

As he speaks to the Tribune on the phone, following a gig in Cavan, he says he’s really looking forward to his Galway concert and to meeting fans afterwards – it’s been nearly four years since he’s met some of them, due to Covid.

Johnny is one of those entertainers who meets and greets after gigs, sometimes for up to two hours, before he heads off home.

At 78, he says he doesn’t perform for the money these days, but because he likes singing for an audience and enjoys entertaining people.

“I no longer like the travelling to and from venues and I don’t do the driving on tours anymore. I still have the energy for the stage, but the travelling is hard.

“But once I finish this tour, I won’t go on the road again till next Autumn,” Johnny explains.

In the summer months, he enjoys a quieter life, spending time with his two grown-up children and an 11-year-old grandson, who’s learning how to play the guitar. That gives Johnny a kick as neither of his two had any interest in following him into the music business.

And, of course, he never stops writing songs, something he describes as “very satisfying but frustrating”. The frustration depends on how quickly or how slowly a song comes to him.

Sometimes, he could be walking near his home when a line will enter his head and he makes great use of his smartphone by immediately recoding the melody or singing the line. And that’s great, but then, back home,  writer’s block could set in, maybe for months. Yet, at other times a song – lyrics and tune – could come to him in one sitting!

Pictured: Johnny was born in Offaly to parents from East Galway.

 

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

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