Review of their gig in Vicar St., Dublin, 4 Oct '99
It was 9:15pm when the man with probably the finest voice in Irish music walked out on stage, greeted with loud and rapturous cheers. One sensed that, for most of the audience, this was not their first time seeing this fine Galway singer. I, however, was different in that respect.
Sean immediately started with 'The heart of wonder' from his 1996 album "Turn a phrase" - a gem of an album produced by Omagh's very own Arty McGlynn. Sean's sense of humour and jovial nature made the entire night a highly enjoyable affair with great banter from the crowd and each song was more warmly applauded than the last. Songs like "May morning dew", "Green among the gold" and "Lullaby" seemed to effortlessly come from his mouth as he stood relaxed, with both arms loosely by his side. We were given sneak previews of his upcoming album as well as a few numbers from his last album "No stranger", including the cover of Sting's "Fields of gold" - a modern ballad that Sean has made his very own.
By far the most popular song of the night was "From Galway to Graceland". On announcing his intent to sing it next he was interrupted with calls for "Wait for Mary, she's in the toilets!". This, he politely did sensing how eagerly awaited this particular song must have been for the aforementioned Mary. On her return, he dedicated it to her and treated her and the rest of us to that fine, fine song.
Sean Keane was voted Performer of the Year by readers of Irish Music Magazine in 1997 and he still proves extremely popular with his audiences. This audience demanded more at the end and wouldn't let the poor man go home! Sean came back for two encores and we all left "The Vicar" (as he likes to call it) thoroughly entertained by this warm and charismatic artist.
Check out the Sean Keane site at www.seankeane.com