Perhaps Northern Ireland’s smiliest artist, an evening in the company of Matt McGinn would do your heart good. Friendly and funny, he exudes warmth from the stage.
That doesn’t mean though, that he doesn’t deal with the serious stuff when it comes to his music. The End of the Common Man, Matt’s latest release and third studio album, contains 10 tracks with themes as diverse as unrequited love, heartbreak, crime, politics and murder for starters.
Besides his own recordings, Matt is also an esteemed songwriter and producer and can often be seen working alongside fellow artists including Gareth Dunlop and Brigid O’Neill. Get to Know Matt McGinn.
Name: Matt McGinn
Where you’re from: Hilltown, County Down
Describe your style in 5 words or fewer: Constantly giving off to music
Digital music, CDs or vinyl: All have their place with me at the minute. I couldn’t do without any of them
Biggest musical influence: John Martyn, Bob Dylan, Tom Waits, Ethan Johns, Sinead Frame, Gavin Quigley, Cricky Markey, Lennon & McCartney, Brother & Sisters, Parents, Uncles, Aunts etc., John McCart, Paul Brady, Hendrix
What you’re listening to right now: The brand new album from Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker. It’s fabulous. The Kiss of Light from Anthony Toner and Frank Ormsby also
Favourite venue: The Elmwood Hall, Belfast
Favourite local band/artist of the moment: Really looking forward to the next album by Ciara O’Neill
Last gig you attended: The Orphan Brigade, Carnlough
Best gig you have ever attended: Bon Iver, 3 Arena, Dublin and The Highwaymen, King’s Hall, Belfast
Favourite album of all time: Solid Air, John Martyn
Musician you’d love to collaborate with: Buddy Miller and Donal Lunny
Last thing you do before going on-stage: Jump up and down in a strange way
You have £10 left in the world, what do you by?: A decent Côtes du Rhône and a block of brie
Matt’s Lessons of War project launches in the Black Box at 2pm on Sunday the 15th of April. For details of merch and upcoming live dates, see here.