Raised by a music-loving family in a farmhouse in Blarney, County Cork, Mick Flannery's early influences were Tom Waits, Bob Dylan and the pragmatic desire to not be a starving artist. He often stepped away from his guitar and piano and picked up a chisel in order to make money as a local stonemason. He gave up that dream life of crafting wealthy homeowners’ property walls and doorways, however, once it became apparent he was really, really good at fashioning and performing songs. As in, a buttery voice that makes the lyrics about betrayal and hurt sink in and stay with you, good. As in, win the International Songwriting Competition in Nashville, good. As in, two consecutive albums hitting No. 1 in Ireland, good. Last year, he collaborated with widely praised songwriter Susan O’Neil on the album In the Game- an intense, exquisite themed work about the coming together and falling apart of a relationship: the joys, depth, wild abandon and despair of love. These add to his canon of dark, intense songs, melodic poetics that express layered aspects of the human condition - its flaws, triumphs, and general uncertainty. When the old stonemason is chipping away at something greater, expect to be inspired.
Biography by Jason Markusoff