Date Published: 29-Jun-2011
It was something of a coup when it was announced that De La Soul would be playing the Big Top at this year’s Galway Arts Festival. The hip-hop trio, acclaimed for classic albums like 3 Feet High and Rising and their mega selling success with Gorillaz, come to Galway on Saturday, July 23.
Kelvin Mercer – better known by his MC name Posdnous – is talking from a hotel room in Shepherd’s Bush, London. Though away from his native Long Island, he doesn’t really consider himself as being ‘on tour’.
“We just had a few dates that we were doing,” he says. “But everything’s going really well, we were just in Paris. We’re just doing one-offs here and there. When I’m back home every four or five days, it’s like I’m flying in and out to do shows.”
Posdnous – ‘Pos’ to his friends – will be joined by his bandmates David Jude Jolicoeur and Vincent ‘Mase’ Mason for Galway. Although they sometimes tour with a band, De La Soul will be performing as the classic trio for the Arts Festival. Each member will be firing out witty and high energy lyrics, with Mase also performing DJ duties.
“It’ll be the three of us performing; we’re going to give it our all and have fun with it,” enthuses Posdnous. “A lot of the music we use is on MP3s, so we can turn around and manipulate them on a computer. A band is a different dynamic and a feel but I think we try our best – and I think we succeed in having that same energy.”
De La Soul have been performing together since 1987. Mace started out using vinyl to DJ with, but the band members have made the transition to the digital era.
“We had a lot of fun,” Posdnous says about the band’s early days. “But you had to be very conscious sometimes while you’re performing, you gotta make sure you’re not jumping too hard, ‘cos you may make Mace’s record skip!”
De La Soul released their debut album 3 Feet High and Rising in 1989. The record was instantly hailed as a classic and is still revered to this day. The success of De La Soul’s debut lay in its appeal to fans of all genres, not just hip-hop.
Most hip-hop bands at the time were sampling soul and funk, but 3 Feet High featured snippets from artists like Tom Waits, Steely Dan, The Turtles and Johnny Cash.
“It was just music that was in our parents’ catalogue, honestly,” says Posdnous. “The title of that record, 3 Feet High and Rising came from a Johnny Cash song called 6 Feet High And Rising. I grew up around a lot of soul music, but it didn’t make me think that ‘OK, this is what I need to sample’.
“We just felt there was so many different ways to pull the music from, I think we were blessed to be all like minded in that respect.”
When hip-hop became a mega-selling genre, it was understandable that the artists whose work was being sampled came looking for royalty payments. Do stricter copyright laws make it difficult these days for bands like De La Soul?
“It’s not hard to make the album, it just may not be considered lucrative,” explains Posdnous. “Sampling is almost more established now than ever, the laws are in place. It’s just certain artists, if you’re gonna sample from Paul McCartney – he loves hip-hop music and the dynamic of it – but you’ve got to play a steep price for it.”
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.
Galway ‘Park and Ride’ could become permanent
Date Published: 07-May-2013
A park ‘n’ ride scheme from Carnmore into Galway city could become a permanent service if there is public demand.
That’s according to the Chief Executive of Galway Chamber of Commerce, Michael Coyle.
The pilot scheme will begin at 7.20 next Monday morning, May 13th.
Motorists will be able to park cars at the airport carpark in Carnmore and avail of a bus transfer to Forster Street in the city.
Buses will depart every 20 minutes at peak times and every 30 minutes at offpeak times throughout the day, at a cost of 2 euro per journey.
Tuam awaits UK hay import as overnight rainfall adds to fodder crisis
Date Published: 09-May-2013
Tuam is now awaiting a third import of hay from the UK as overnight rainfall has increased pressure on farmers struggling to source fodder.
A total of ten loads are expected at Connacht Gold stores throughout the West with a load expected at the Airglooney outlet this evening or tomorrow.
Farmers throughout the county have been struggling to cope with the animal feed shortage and a below than normal grass growth due to unseasonal weather conditions.
Overnight rainfall in the Galway area has also added to the problem making ground conditions in many areas are quite poor.
Joe Waldron, Agricultual Advisor with Connacht Gold says farmers in short supply can contact the Airglooney outlet on 093 – 24101.
Transport Minister urges end to Bus Eireann strike action
Date Published: 12-May-2013
The Transport Minister is urging drivers at Bus Éireann to engage in talks with management, in an effort to bring their strike action to an end.
There were no Bus Éireann services operating out of Galway today as a result of nationwide strike action by staff affiliated with the national bus and rail union.
Up to 20 Bus Éireann drivers are continuing to picket outside the bus depot at the docks in the city this evening.
Drivers from other unions have decided not to cross the picket line and go into work today – causing the disruption to be even worse.
Bus drivers are protesting against five million euro worth of cuts to their overtime and premium pay – cuts which Bus Eireann says are vital to ensure the future viability of the company.
The majority of services nationwide are disrupted, and the union say strike action will continue until management are willing to go back into negotiations.
However, it’s not expected to affect school services next week.
Galway bay fm news understands that around 70 percent, or over 100 Galway bus Eireann drivers are affiliated with the NBRU.