Pete chosen as “Songwriter of the Year”

From Lorraine O’Reilly, singer and songwriter: It was an honour and privilege for me to accept the IMRO “Contribution to Songwriting Award” on behalf of Pete at this Gala night which highlighted the plethora of Irish talent this country has. The audience was entertained throughout the evening with live performances from the Chieftans, Dolores Keane, Eleanor McEvoy, Mary Coughlan, The Kilfenora Ceili Band, Karan Casey, Mairead Nesbitt, Kate Rusby and Teada together with Niall Toner and his great country blues band. The evening was rounded off with the Dubliners and Paddy Reilly paying tribute to Pete by singing “The Fields of Athenry.” see below;

The Dubliners and Paddy Reilly paying tribute to Pete by singing

I thought you might like to read a quote from this eloquent piece written by Sean Laffey, Editor of Irish Music Magazine:

“The awards are our chance to thank those musicians who have brightened our lives over the past year and for some, to honour them for a long lasting and changing impression on our culture. Pete St. John’s the “Fields of Athenry” has become an anthem for the masses (after being brilliantly interpreted by Paddy Reilly) in much the same way as the Corrie’s “Flower of Scotland” is now almost the unofficial National anthem of the Scots. Remember these were written when pop music was at its most pervasive, yet the folk quality of the songs has triumphed over the ephemeral fashions of ‘Golden Oldies’. The power that folk song has goes beyond the merely popular, because not only does it take stock of the real human condition, it can by various ciphers write its own shorthand for a culture. The value of songs like the “Fields of Athenry” is truly priceless, with accessible memorable melodies and words that mean something they connect to a body of ballads that are waiting to be discovered.”

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