July 19th 2011

Hi,

I hope this finds you well and in a good frame of mind. I wanted to get this update out before I leave for Ireland on Monday. I’ll spend a few days with my family before picking up our tour group on July 17 and heading up to Northern Ireland. I must say that I’m looking forward to this, our twenty first tour. There will be twenty of us jaunting around the North, exploring and enjoying the scenery. We should have some good photos when we get back and I’ll be sure to post some here on the website and on my Facebook page.

We’ve had quite a few people express interest in our Irish Music Cruise on January 29, 2012. Our itinerary takes us to Grand Cayman, Honduras, Mexico and Half Moon Cay and during our concerts at sea we’ll share some terrific music, songs and stories. Musicians include The Wolfe Tones, Archie Fisher, The Makem and Spain Brothers, Ciaran Sheehan, Seamus Kennedy, myself, Mairtin De Cogain, Haneke Cassel and more. Please call Debbie at 1 888 564-7474 and ask about the specials. Email: info@irishcruises.com

I’ve quite enjoyed performing at Indigo Alley in Fernandina Beach Florida and have scheduled another on Friday, August 5. It’s a lovely little venue in a lovely part of the world.

 August will also see me back in Kevin Barry’s for several performances and on August 19 I’m delighted to once again be in concert at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Rincon, Georgia. Please check the calendar page for exact times.

We are currently booking our Celtic Christmas concert series. Should your church or local community be interested in this unique show, please contact me. The same holds true for house concerts, private performances, festivals or clubs.

My four sailings with Norwegian Cruise Lines begin on September 17 from Manhattan. Each cruise is a week- long and The Jewel sails to Canada and New England. Contact NCL or your travel consultant to book a cabin.

OK, I know this is a short writing and I have much to say on recent media events, e.g.: The Casey Anthony trial, The News of The World reporting scandal, the rape accusation leveled at DSK as he’s now known, the economy, the bloody heat down south, the upcoming Presidential election…but time is of the essence and I have yet to pack for the Shamrock Shore, so I’ll leave you now and get to it…we’ll chat again!

Thanks for all your continued support and enjoy life as best you can, it’s all we have really.

I will offer a toast to one and all whist in Ireland and shortly after I return will begin planning the 2012 Tour to Ireland.

All the best,

May 4, 2011

Hello,
I hope this finds you in a good frame of mind given the state of things. My thoughts and prayers go out to all those affected by the recent weather events, nobody has ever seen anything like this before. The ferocity of those tornadoes and storms was staggering. Hard to know what exactly is happening to our world but it is getting intense.

Add to that the chaos in the Middle East, the ever rising price of food, gas and everyday necessities, piracy on the high seas, traffic controllers falling asleep, record billion dollar profits for giant corporations, bits and pieces falling off planes and Donald Trump thinking of running for the highest office in the land…small wonder I feel like a spectator at the Greatest Show on Earth!
If it wasn’t so tragic it would be funny!

Lord only knows how we will resolve the myriad of issues confronting us but we will…after all we dug most of the holes ourselves. It will take time, wisdom and sacrifice but we’re up to the challenge…especially here in the United States where the spirit and the will are strong. We most certainly live in interesting times.

I’m continually befuddled and astounded by the latest technology and I have simply given up on my ability to keep pace. I’m one of the few I know who still talks into the cell phone. I can never get my kids to answer their phones until I text them and tell them to pick up when the bloody thing rings…it’s me on the other end, like they don’t know.

It takes me forever to text…I have to pull over, take out the glasses, and go at it, one letter at a time…and I have to be diligent so ‘where are you’ doesn’t come out like ‘wirf aqf  u’…God, but sometimes I loathe the thing. …And now we find out that there is a Big Brother aspect to the whole technology…my, my, my, we are but cogs in the wheel!

OK, here’s my stand on it, Big Brother new gadgets ‘n all…I don’t care.  All I want is to simplify my life…write a few more songs and poems, write a short story or two, try to be a better guitar player, try even harder to be a better person, spend time with those I love and care for, spend even more time with those who love and care for me, spend some time traveling in Ireland, in the Caribbean, in Europe, up North, down South…wherever the wind takes me…and try to be true to myself and to the God in which I believe.

Easy enough you might think, but I’m writing this on a computer…and earlier there was a virus issue and I spent time trying to fix the problem and I was looking at the screen and I might as well have been looking into a field, and on and on and on it goes…
Please excuse the random thoughts contained in the above.
            
Right so, we have but four seats left on our Enchanted Ireland Tour, meeting in Dublin on July 17 and heading to the far flung northern reaches of Ireland. It’s not too late to join us although the hotels are pushing us to release the rooms we won’t need. If you have any sort of hankering to come along please give me a call, email me or even…text me.
Information can be found on the O’Donoghue Tours page of the website.
 
I mention again that I will be performing onboard the beautiful Norwegian Jewel as she sails out of Manhattan on September 17 – September 24 – October 1 – October 8… four cruises in all, going to New England and Atlantic Canada. You can book online at ncl.com or  cruises.com or through your local travel agent. I have oodles of downtime so it’s lovely when friends come along.

I’m delighted also to be included in the Irish Music Cruises Concerts at Sea, on January 29, 2012. My fellow entertainers include Seamus Kennedy, The Wolfe Tones, The Makem and Spain Brothers, Archie Fisher, Mairtin De Cogain, Ciaran Sheehan and others. This one promises to be a blast. For information please call Debra at: 1 888-564-7474 or online at irishmusiccruises.com

On May 27 I will perform again at  Indigo Alley in Fernandina Beach, Florida. I enjoyed playing there a few weeks ago, it’s quite the bohemian venue and they have a nice wine and beer selection.

I have recently enjoyed performing at my long standing gigs in Kevin Barry’s, Savannah, Georgia and Katie O’Donald’s, Bluffton South Carolina. It’s always a pleasure and great fun entertaining at these venues…they bring out the nicest audiences.

I’ve had inquiries lately as to whether I do private events and the short answer is…yes. House concerts, private parties, community concerts, fund raising and local county events and on occasion library performances…kind of defeats the purpose doesn’t it?

It’s fun though…A man went into a public library and said to the librarian ‘I would like a book by Shakespeare please’.
The librarian replied ‘which one?’
‘William’

Anyway, if you are interested in having me perform at an aforementioned event please get in touch. My best wishes to out to Carroll Brown and his tour group as they head off to Scotland and Ireland next week…hope the weather obliges and a splendid time is had by all.

We are well stocked with CD’s here on the website and we have the technology (there’s that word again) to download single songs. My music is also available at cdBaby, iTunes, Amazon and most other online sites.

Please sign our Guestbook if you have time, or share a message with me on Facebook. Thanks for taking the time to read this edition of  Ramblings and your thoughts, comments and suggestions are most welcome…we’re all in this together.

All the best for now, 

February 1, 2011

Hello again,

 

Thanks for stopping by. It seems to me that websites may well go the way of mySpace and cassette tapes…everyone is on Facebook or Twitter at this moment in our evolution. Things change so fast, don’t you sometimes feel like applying the brakes to life’s merry-go-round to hop off for a spell? I certainly do, but alas there’s no time for that right now so let me continue with this update.

Our Celtic Spirituality Tour to Ireland in July has been postponed until 2012.   Fr. Liam and Mary Collins offer their apologies for any convenience caused.

 

My own Enchanted Tour to Ireland, (our 21st) is as scheduled. Please go to our Tours page for all the in depth information. We leave on July 17 and plan to visit the Northern counties. It’s a terrific package at a great price and I look forward to jaunting about on the Old Sod again, singing songs, telling jokes and enjoying the craic (fun). Call me with any questions.

Took some time off recently to go down to the islands and I’m here to report that I fell in love with St. Maarten/St. Martin. We went hiking and it was spectacular. Must post some pictures here and on my Facebook page. The weather was gorgeous…that alone is a good reason to move there…would that I was younger and still full of bluster.

 

I also re-scheduled last weekend to afford time off so that I could enjoy the success of my young cousin Colin O’Donoghue in his movie The Rite. There was dinner, the movie, and champagne. The reviews are fairly positive and I wish him all the success in the world. Check the movie out. Anthony Hopkins is brilliant as usual and Colin holds his own alongside.

 

I’ve been diligently practicing and working on new songs recently, including one elusive piece that I’m having the devil’s own job trying to finish…I started the song in 2005 and have come back to it time and time again and finally I said ‘I’ve had enough, I’ll finish it if it takes forever’…and that’s what’s happening…but I’m getting close. Amazingly I wrote another while taking a break from it.

When it’s done I think I’ll call it ‘Grey’…’cause every time I go at it another hair loses pigmentation!!

 

Alright enough rubbish talk. We are approaching the ‘Irish Time’ of year and I’m so looking forward to upcoming events. Please look at our Calendar Page for exact dates, times and locations.

 

On February 12, I perform alongside Moira Nelligan and the Dixie Jigs (I swear, I didn’t make that up) and Carroll Brown at the St. Peter Claver’s Irish Night in Macon, Georgia. Unfortunately Celtic Woman is in town the same night so if you want to see both, come to our show and buy the video of the girls…problem solved, and our concert is a fundraiser!

 

The Savannah Irish Festival is on February 18-19-20 and features performances by Cathie Ryan, Gabriel Donohue and Deirdre Connolly, Legacy, The Mairtin De Cogain Project, The Ennis Sisters, Brendan Nolan, The Savannah Irish Dancers and more. I will again host the Singer/ Songwriter sessions…one of my favourites and a ‘splendid time is guaranteed for all’.

 

 The following week, on February 26th,The Beaufort Irish Festival will be held…in where else? – Beaufort, South Carolina. Gabriel Donohue, Carroll Brown and I are the featured artists. 

 

On Sunday, February 27th there will be a concert to aid the Eddie Ivie Scholarship  for Studies in Ireland. This show is at The Averitt Theatre in Statesboro, Georgia at 3.00PM and I will be there along with Cathie Ryan and her band. Quite a bit of information there, so we’ll leave it at that for now.

 

I’m pleased to announce that I have been invited to perform again this year a guest entertainer on board the Norwegian Jewel.
She will sail out of New York en route to Canada and New England on September 17, September 24, October 1, and October 8 and I will be on board for all four cruises.

For further information or to book a cabin contact NCL.com or your personal travel agent. I am looking forward to working on the beautiful Jewel once again on this, my seventh year performing with NCL.

 

Did I get everything in? Hard to say but if I think of anything else I’ll post it on Facebook or send out an email notice.

As always thanks for your support and be safe out there. In the next update perhaps we’ll get into world events and such…huh? Lord knows, there’s plenty going on…God save us all!

 

Bye for now,

January 10th 2011

Hello,

Time once again for an update. We’re right in the middle of ‘Irish Season’ and so far it has been a blast. The Savannah Irish Festival, St. Peter Claver Irish Night, Beaufort Irish Festival and St William’s Irish Night were all roaring successes. I had a great time hanging out and performing with Cathie Ryan, Gabriel Donohue, Mairtin De Cogain, The Ennis Sisters, Joanie Madden, Carroll Brown, Brendan Nolan, Legacy, Moira Nelligan and Howard Keeley. And to see a lot of old faces I haven’t seen for a while was wonderful…thank you one and all.

This weekend ushers in Tara Feis, Emmet Park, Savannah on Saturday, and followed by performances at Holy Family Church, Columbus, Georgia on Tuesday March 15… Kevin Barry’s, Savannah, Georgia with Frank Emerson and Carroll Brown on Wednesday March 16… Katie O’Donald’s, Bluffton, South Carolina on Thursday March 17… and The Museum of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg, Florida on Friday March 18. After a couple of days rest I’ll be back on stage at Kevin Barry’s from Monday March 21 – Sunday, March 27. Whew, I feel tired already. Oh, and I’m sitting in at Kevin Barry’s on Friday March 11.

We still have seats on our Enchanted Ireland Tour on July 17 and continue to offer a $100.00 per person savings when you sign on. Please click on our Tours and Cruises Page for more in depth information. While you’re on that part of the site you can check out dates for my cruises on board the Norwegian Jewel in September/October and our Irish Music Cruise on January 29, along with the Makem and Spain Brothers, Seamus Kennedy, The Wolfe Tones, Mairtin De Cogain, Archie Fisher and more…it’s going to be a large time out on the ocean. I love cruising and what could be more delightful than to have some friends along to share the fun. Please feel free to contact me with any questions about my tour to Ireland or any of the cruises.

My newest CD, A Splash of No Regrets continues to get terrific reviews and it’s being downloaded seemingly with tremendous popularity. I’m very pleased with all the attention it’s getting especially the original song “The Time Has Come (Ron’s song)” which many consider to be the stand out song on the recording. Its message has connected with people and the only way I’d be happier would be if Ron had lived to enjoy its popularity. He did hear the song before he passed but I’m not sure if he was aware that it was written for him…it was untitled at the time. Perhaps he’s looking down smiling.

I posted on Facebook that I was looking for a venue or a house party or community sponsored concert to play on my way back from St. Petersburg to Savannah next week…that still holds true. The night is Saturday, March 19. The Irish mood will still be going strong so if you have any thoughts please let me know. I told you several months ago that I became a US citizen last April and to celebrate that I will sing the American National Anthem on Saturday March 12 at the opening ceremony of Tara Feis. I’m nervous, to say the least but, what an honour. Keep your fingers crossed for me, and I promise to sing it straight…no vocal acrobatics from this Irishman.

 The Green Island Radio Show trucks along nicely and in my next update I will offer recommendations for some new music that we’ve played on the show. It streams live on Saturdays at nine and Wednesdays at eleven, Eastern Standard Time at: www.gpb.org That’s it for now. You can get in touch with me at your leisure; my contact information can be found here on the website. If you have a mind to, leave some comments here on our Guestbook Page or on my Facebook Page. As always thanks for your continued support and enjoy St. Patrick’s Day, wherever you may be. All the best,

November 12, 2010

Hello again,

It’s getting to be that busy time of year when thoughts turn towards Thanksgiving and the Holiday Season, and once again I marvel at the swift passing of time…another year almost over. The weather here in Savannah is very pleasant indeed; cool mornings, warm afternoons and bright blue skies compliment the gentle pace of life here. Having spent several weeks in Atlantic Canada and seeing the spectacular Fall colours I feel compelled to report that we do get a bit of that in Savannah, albeit it on a much smaller scale than up north. Sometimes while driving or taking a walk I’ll notice a cluster of rust tinged foliage or even a singular tree in the beginning stages of shedding its withered copper or gold coloured leaves, and I think ‘how beautiful’.  Beauty is indeed in the eye of the beholder, if you stop to look around you and I mean really look, you will see things in your neighborhood, street or back yard that will amaze you; how a shaft of sunlight angles through an overgrown bush and dances on a pathway, long shadows cast by old garden tools create a temporary mosaic filled with intriguing patterns, a solitary petite flower that you never noticed before, defiantly growing in an unused bucket, or the sound of a cluster of falling leaves as they land and scrape along the pathway.

 Natural beauty is but inches away at any given time in any given place…the trouble is we don’t take notice because we’re busy important people with lots to do. I would venture to guess that at some point in our lives, we…all of us…would move the earth if we could, for one more look at a falling leaf or a pretty flower or a swaying tree or an ocean sunset. For my part, I’m making a conscious effort to appreciate these things daily in the hope that small things will enrich my journey.

 I didn’t mean to wax all poetic like back there, but hey, I’ve been away for a while.

 I arrived back from my N.C.L. travels three weeks ago and have been trying to catch up since. Before I continue I do want to say hello and ‘thanks’ to my fellow entertainers on the Norwegian Jewel and Spirit. I had a terrific time working with Ross Mitchell, Brenda Kaye, Bud Anderson, Jane L. Powell, Ivan Pecel, Second City Comedy and all the Production and Cruise Staff aboard both vessels.

I met a ton of lovely passengers, slight exaggeration there but you know what I mean, and all in all it was a memorable experience. I continue to learn and grow as my career takes unusual twists and turns and I am thankful to be given these opportunities. Norwegian Cruise Line has seen fit to invite me to perform with them again in 2011 and I will have specific cruise dates early next year.

We have two Ireland Tours in 2011 and briefly the information is as follows:

 

Harry O’Donoghue’s   Enchanted Tour to Ireland
July 17 – 24, 2011

$1,890.00 per person sharing (land only)
Save $100 by signing up before January 21, 2011

 

This year we explore the beautiful Northern Counties: Donegal, Fermanagh, Derry, Antrim, Tyrone and end up in the ‘wee county’, my own County Louth. All hotels are four star, we have a full sightseeing itinerary and we’ll enjoy the usual good times or ‘craic’ as we travel around. As with all our tours everything is included with the exception of lunches and beverages. Go to our Tours Page for the full itinerary and more in depth information and terms and conditions.

Fr. Liam and Mary Collins’ Annual Celtic Spirituality Tour 
with Harry O’Donoghue 
July 26 – August 2, 2011
$1,890.00 per person sharing (land only)
Save $100 by signing up before January 21, 2011

 

On our Celtic Spirituality Tour we will cut a swath across Ireland from the rugged west coast of County Clare out to the barren Aran Islands and through the Monastic Midlands, visiting Clonmacnoise, Clonfert Cathedral, St. Bridget’s Cathedral, Glendalough and more. Fr. Liam will offer his own insightful thoughts along the way and evenings will be filled with good fellowship, song, laughter and discussion. Our hotels are once again finely appointed and we have a well paced sightseeing itinerary in place. 

 For more information please go again to our O’Donoghue Tours page.

 SPECIAL NOTE: We are happy to introduce an early sign-on bonus. Save $100.00 per person by signing on, with deposit, before January 21, 2011.

 I’m thrilled with the buzz coming in for my new recording  ‘A Splash of No Regrets’. I mailed copies to various radio stations, publications and electronic media and the reviews have been very positive. The CD is available here on our website as well as Barnes and Noble, Amazon, cdBaby, I tunes, Saints and Shamrocks (Savannah store) and of course at my shows. The compilation ‘Live and Just as Well’  has also been a big hit. We re-mastered the songs and took out all unnecessary dialogue. It’s time to re-introduce our two Christmas projects; ‘Nollaig’ and ‘A Christmas Postcard’ are available from the aforementioned outlets.

 Speaking of Christmas, Carroll Brown and I are scheduled to begin our annual Celtic Christmas Concert Tour on December 1 at The Villages in central Florida. The full Tour Schedule can be found on our Calendar of Events page here on the website.

 Kevin Barry’s celebrated 30 years in business on October 31. It was quite an event. The pub offered a tasty buffet filled with all sorts of delicious offerings, an engaging stage show featuring Irish musicians who came to town for the evening. Some heartfelt speeches were made and notable personalities showed up for the celebration. Famed Dublin folk singer Danny Doyle chatted with Cahir O’Doherty, songwriter Brendan Nolan wrote a ditty for the occasion and Gabriel Donohue, Frank Emerson, Carroll Brown, Johnnie Kennedy, Colleen Settle, Butch Elmgren, Dr. Paul Jurgensen, Frank Clancy and Vic Power all contributed to the show. 

 There was a line at the end of the bar…not for drinks but to have a photo taken with actor Tom Berenger, who was, I must say, very tolerant and patient. Phil Hadaway taped the performances…up to a point, if you know what I mean, and Donald Carroll (Katie O’Donald’s) and Barbara Smith from Columbine Blue Music were also in attendance.  May I offer a hearty Congratulations to Kevin Barry’s, a one-of-a-kind establishment.

 With the demise of the Irish Pub scene here in America (from a live music standpoint), we touring musicians are always interested in new avenues to promote and perform our music. If you are interested in an O’Donoghue performance for a social event, concert, speaking engagement, festival, singer/songwriter show, library, church or community hall performance, or if you want to plan a tour to Ireland for a large group or a smaller or special interest group please contact me and we’ll take it from there.

 As always thank you for your support and encouragement. Take care and I’ll see you out there. Please leave any comments you might have here on our Guestbook or on my Facebook Page.

 

All the best,

Nollaig – An Irish Christmas

    1.    The Flower Seller
    2.    Old Christmas Card
    3.    Christmas Island
    4.    Kerry Christmas Carol
    5.    Bright Blue Rose
    6.    In the Bleak Midwinter
    7.    Silin’s Waltz/It came upon a Midnight Clear
    8.    Christmas in Killarney/The Kerry Dances
    9.    The Saviour He is Born
    10.    Wind in the Willows
    11.    A Christmas Childhood
    12.    The Virgin Mary had a Baby Boy
    13.    Pray for Me
    14.    Away in a Manger
Produced by Phil Hadaway, Carroll Brown, Harry O’Donoghue
©2007

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