We squeezed into the smallest concert hall (more a cramped room than anything else) and were blown away by the music of an Irishman called Albert Niland.
Kings of Kilburn High Road
He played like a demon. Not only did he play 3 musical lines and used a foot drum at the same time, but he sang with an intensity that had us on the edge of our seats for an hour.
Now, you should know that I am no stranger to Kilburn High Road (London) as I worked a flower stall on Cricklewood Broadway, and I know what types walk those pavements. I have met those Kings in the flesh. I've been to their grotty bedsits and I have shared their pints and the occasional whiskey. I still cannot hear this song without tears coming to my eyes.
Here's another little gem.
Sign of the Times (Prince cover)
Albert Niland does visit The Netherlands from time to time. He's returned to Hellevoetsluis three years ago, being the main act that time, and selling out the largest concert hall. And not so long ago he played De Steeg in The Hague. In fact, he tours the Continent all the time, being more a touring proper musician than an artist who shows his face in the media for other reasons.
He's quite elusive. He does have a website, but is not into the 'Hey Folks Look I'm a Star' thing.
Born in Mountbellew, Co. Galway, Ireland, he released his first album 'Dirty Day' as long ago as 2003. It was followed up by 'A Night in Dublin' in 2006, 'Paradiso', recorded at...yep, Paradiso Amsterdam, in 2008, 'The Hungry Ghost' in 2009, and a nameless double album in 2011.
Albert Niland's website
Albert on Facebook (if you ask me, this hasn't been updated for years)
He is a fenomenal guitar player! The few sources that name him all mention that he was the guitar player for one of the 'Riverdance' tours, but that sells him short. This man is more than just a guitar player, he embodies music.
And to me (but hey, this is MY blog) his brilliance comes across far better live than on vinyl or on whatever stuff they use to make a CD.
So this means that you will have to make it to one of his concerts. When you do, spare me a thought, just for a moment, and send me his vibes. You would make my day.