Derry-born roots & bluesman Niall Kelly releases his third album Promenade on May 24th. The nine songs on Promenade exude confidence and maturity in their writing, spinning his personal tales through musical explorations in Celtic soul, blues and folk.
After moving to London to pursue music, Niall’s career started as the jam host at ‘Ain’t Nothin’ But Blues’ in Soho. Over seven years, Niall associated with many talented musicians, including Ian Siegal, Geraint Watkins and Carmen Vanderberg. From booking the blues to starring in his own right, Niall Kelly transferred to the stage himself, and self-released two studio albums of his own songwriting. Hand In Fire (2012) and Not Sleeping (2015), both gaining official release when reissued on Glovebox Records in October 2018. Niall also wrote and produced an album of country songs for EMI Music in 2018, the ‘practice’ helping him hone his writing chops even further.
For this album, Niall surrounded himself with the finest musicians from London’s blues and roots scene and kept takes to a minimum, catching the lightning in the bottle that is the perfect live-in-the-studio performance. The balance that runs throughout Promenade between gospel ballads, americana mid-tempo and R&B, captures the versatility of his songwriting, and emulates the energy of these Soho jams.
“I kinda met everyone at the blues jams – Oliver Darling, Imelda May’s guitarist was there and, through Geraint I also got to play with sax player, Martin Winning, who’s played with everyone from Van Morrison and Roger Daltrey to BB King, Dana Gillespie and Chris Farlowe. And Joe Glossop, the keyboard player, a great soul and blues player, did Dr. John songs brilliantly. And now he works for Sir Tom Jones!”
A previous guest was legendary pedal-steel player, B.J.Cole (acclaimed for his work with REM and Sir Elton John among others). Niall’s recent collaborators are the talents of Matt Holland (Van Morrison band) and Martin Winning (Roger Daltrey band). Tucker Nelson ( Nick Lowe collaborator, producer of recent Graham Parker, Jim Lauderdale albums) is in the producer’s chair on Promenade.
In 2017, Niall and his band supported The Beautiful South’s Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott on a sold out national Irish tour.