Wexford troubadour Gordon Barry has released his new EP, All the Live Long Year. We asked him the BIG questions . . .

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Recorded between Dublin, Cork, Wexford and Coney Island, New York, the new set of songs includes Old Fashioned Morphine, which was written by Jolie Holland of The Be Good Tanyas.

The remaining self-penned tracks feature an array of established Irish musicians; Christian Best (drums), Conor Brady (guitar) and Cian Boylan (piano, keys).

Barry's previous releases include 2017’s debut album The Best Way to Kill a Monster, which was mixed by legendary Seattle Producer Steve Fisk, the man responsible for early recordings by Nirvana and Soundgarden.

Steve Earle

The album’s first single Devil & St. Jesus went on to win the 2017 International Song writing Competition in Nashville joining the ranks of previous ISC winners including Gotye, Passenger, Gregory Porter, Bastille and Cork Songwriters Mick Flannery and Jack O'Rourke.

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In the same year Barry was invited by Steve Earle to take up a scholarship role at his annual song writing school in Woodstock, New York. Now in its sixth year, Earle has since gone on to say, "Gordon Barry is the best songwriter that's come out of Camp Copperhead but make no mistake he was already a special songwriter when he got there."

Tell us three things about yourself?

I’m a vegetarian half my life.

I’m teetotal four years.

I once came face to face with a Black Bear.

How would you describe your music?

Alternative Folk for the new age with an underbelly of country. Easy listening with introspective lyrics that draw inspiration from the imagery of writers like John Steinbeck and Charles Frazier.

Who are your musical inspirations?

Steve Earle, Bob Dylan, Jakob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Tom Waits, Hank Williams, Neil Young, Tom Petty, Chris Stapleton.

How did you occupy yourself during the coronavirus lockdown?

Initially at the start when the realisation kicked in and we were in lockdown mode I thought ok I can’t control this so I tried to focus on something I could control so I started doing short workouts in my kitchen, then longer ones and I kept at that everyday y and that helped me stay fit and to keep some semblance of sanity. I also tried to focus on releasing my new EP so made the best of a bad situation and played a couple of online gigs in my garden shed. And Zoom, and Zoom and more Zoom.

What’s your favourite song right now?

Sin City written by Gram Parsons and Chris Hillman.

Favourite lyric of all time?

God that's too hard to pick but I always loved Bob Dylan’s Mr Tambourine Man:

'To dance beneath the diamond sky with one hand waving free, silhouetted by the sea, circled by the circus sands, with all memory and fate driven deep beneath the waves. Let me forget about today until tomorrow.'

If you could only listen to one song for the rest of your life what would it be?

That wouldn’t be great now would it? But if pushed then Heart of Gold by Neil Young.

Where can people find your music/more information?

You can find everything you need to know on my website www.Gordonbarrymusic.com and you can find all my music on Spotify, iTunes or whatever your chosen platform is to listen to your music. Twitter: @gordonbarry_, Facebook: @Gordonbarrymusic, Instagram:@gordon_barry.