Friday 20 September 2019

Caught up in a dream

Conor with the rest of the Seo Linn band.
Conor with the rest of the Seo Linn band.
Conor performing live on stage with Seo Linn.
Conor Moore.
Conor Moore of Seo Linn.
Conor Moore of Seo Linn.
Seo Linn.

By Esther Hayden

Gorey man Conor Moore is riding high on the crest of a musical quaver with the band Seo Linn.

23-year-old Conor is part of up and coming Irish band Seo Linn which rose o national prominence following the Colaiste Lurgan hit Avicii's Wake Me Up as gaeilge.

Conor who got involved with Seo Linn while he was working in Colaiste Lurgan hasn't looked back since then.

Born and reared in Gorey Conor has been Involved in all things music from a very young age; from musicals to traditional sessions and from marching with pipe bands to tutoring percussion.

The son of Paul and Sarah Conor has also played with the talented drumming troop Extreme Rhythm, which are under the guidance of one of Europe's most sought after percussionists, Nick Bailey. He has also has been lucky enough to have shared the stage with highly established artists such as Kelly Clarkson and Celtic Woman on such platforms as Wembley Arena, 3 Arena, The Olympia Theatre, and even X Factor.

These experiences have really helped Conor to refine his abilities as a performance drummer and establish himself as one of Ireland's most promising percussionists.

Conor initially started working in Colaiste Lurgan in Donegal as a musician and had barely a word of Irish on arrival. However this has since changed!

While in Colaiste Lurgan he met Stiofán Ó Fearail, Keith Ó Briain, Daithí Ó Ruaidh, Cathal Ó Ruaidh and Kevin Shortall and together they formed Seo Linn. Conor said the band have been working 'flat out' for the past two years and earlier this summer managed to raise an amazing €50,000 in just one month with a very successful Kickstarter campaign.

The band will use the money to help them produce an album and bring the Irish language and culture overseas.

Focusing all their energy on the Irish language, the band are now ready to make Seo Linn their full time job and Conor's Colaiste Lurgan days are behind him.

Seo Linn are currently in the process of setting up a company that will provide music workshops for teenagers through the medium of Irish. These will incorporate the various elements of music production and performance into a polished, tried and tested workshop which is fun for teenagers to get involved in.

Conor said that for him one of his career highlights to date has been the success of Colaiste Lurgan's version of Wake Me Up. 'Personally speaking it will be hard to beat that and obviously getting the money through Kickstarter. Having people believe in you and what you are doing is massive.

'We are currently getting the company off the ground and at the minute we are more or less living in one of the lads house in Kilkenny. We spent the day practicing. It's tough work but we are slowly but surely getting there and we hope to provide workshops to both primary and secondary schools. We want show how adaptable the language is. We have a good few bookings especially for schools up the North but really all over. We also have a lot of gigs booked up and have just played the Gorey Market Festival which was amazing to be back on home turf for me.

'We also performed at the Berkeley fundraiser in the Academy which was brilliant. Nicky Byrne was the MC on the night and Kodaline. Gavin James and Mundy were also performing. It was nerve wrecking but amazing. Mundy in particular was very complimentary about our style of music and that was amazing to hear. We've met Kodaline a couple of times and we like to think they are fans of ours.

When Conor started in Colaiste Lurgan he 'hadn't a word of Irish. 'After my Leaving Cert I just wanted to burn the books and I thought the job was just musician's job. It was only as I was pulling up to the school that someone said to me that this is an all Irish school.

'But the principal said to me that I had a good future there if I could manage to get a grasp of the language so I did. The lads were great too because they were all able to speak fluently so that even now when we are recording it's still like a little classroom and they let me know if I am making a mistake which is great.

'Now I can email and have Whatsapp conversations in Irish.'

Conor said Seo Linn is now gearing up for an upcoming performance at Electric Picnic having been announced as one of the ten 2FM Play The Picnic artists last week.

Seo Linn has made it through to the final round from hundreds of entries with each of the ten bands playing a live set at Oxfam Ireland's Oxjam Tent at Electric Picnic. Their song will also be played to the nation on 2fm until tomorrow (Wednesday) as a public text vote competition determining one overall winning act. In addition all bands get free weekend camping tickets for the festival.

The overall winner will go on to play The Cosby Stage at the Picnic, gaining even more exposure at the festival.

The act voted number one will also win two masterclasses with some of the best experts in the music industry - Festival Republic Managing Director, Melvin Benn and 2fm Director of Music and Sound, Mark McCabe.

Conor is also a staunch follower of Wexford hurling and can name the 1996 winning team in under a minute. He prides himself on his rendition of 'Dancing at the Crossroads', by the Wild Swans.

Wexford People

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