Review of her gig in Whelan's, Dublin, June 22, 2000
So Gemma Hayes returns to Whelan's for another sell-out show. The word on the grapevine is that she's fast approaching a record deal and, tonight, it's easy to see why.
Although she comes off as a shy, fragile figure at first, Hayes' beautiful voice dominates each of her songs. Her music features a nice blend of country, folk and rock while her lyrics were about the usual singer/songwriter subjects of God, love and traveling. When she wasn't lingering on thoughts about relationships and higher beings she was singing about dossing off school. Apparently (well, according to Ms. Hayes) we wouldn't be at Whelan's if we hadn't played hooky every once in a while... Whether or not that's true is speculation but it's certainly a curious subject that Hayes seems to relate to the other, weightier subjects in her own special way.
Hayes' songs may deal with some serious topics but she offered a little comic relief when somebody's mobile phone went off and she stopped her song to say, "Hello, I'm in the middle of gig here", before adding, "actually, that's probably mine".
While she may have displayed some awkwardness on stage, Hayes displayed much confidence in her music and it looks like she may have a promising career ahead of her.