John Gilheaney is a new singer-songwriter based in Llantrisant, near Cardiff.
John’s music, which is inspired by country and rock ‘n’ roll, has featured on radio and TV. Shows include Hot Country TV, The Country Wildcats and the Keltic Country TV.
In December 2017 one of John’s songs, “The Tides of Time” was included in a 4CD compilation, “New Stars of Irish Country Music.” For more information please click here.
In September 2017 John travelled to Dublin with his Dad, Mick, to record three country/pop songs: “Playing Games With My Heart”, “I’ll Take ‘Em On” and “The Tides of Time”.
The songs were produced by Larry Hogan at the famous Windmill Lane Recording Studios.
Here John talks about his songwriting and his musical plans.
Tell us why you recorded your songs in Ireland
I love country & western music and enjoy watching country shows on TV. My Dad heard a batch of my tunes and thought they had an Irish country/rock ‘n’ roll spirit to them. This isn’t surprising because Dad is from Fenagh, in County Leitrim while Mum is from Cloontakilla in County Mayo, so the country spirit must be in the blood.
Dad thought an Irish producer would suit the songs’ so we sought one in Ireland. I’m glad I found Larry. I’m delighted with the sound he produced.
What inspired “Playing Games With My Heart”?
Romance! The song’s theme is Karma. It was a thrill to record the song in a great studio and hear a tune of mine with a full backing band. This is the first time my songs have gone beyond the acoustic stage.
Who are your favourite singers?
I love great singers like Jim Reeves, Elvis, Roy Orbison, Sam Cooke and Johnny Cash.
When I was growing up I loved a diverse range of groups and singers like Showaddywaddy, Abba, Marc Bolan, The Blow Monkeys and kd lang. I still love them now.
I’m a big fan of Rufus Wainwright. I’ve seen him in concert many times. He’s a beautiful singer-songwriter.
I’m lucky and proud to live in Wales, the Land of Song. I love Welsh singers like the Llantrisant Male Choir, they are a force of nature. In my view the best singer in the world is a Welshman, Tom Jones. I’m a big fan of his albums over the last 20 years. His ‘60s records were phenomenal, too.
What inspires your songwriting?
Experience. When I started writing songs the themes tended to be God, wine and romance! Fair play is another theme of mine. I did a Masters degree in creative writing at Cardiff University some years ago and my career as a journalist has helped me write lyrics.
What are your plans for 2019?
I’m going to release four singles in 2019. Good rock ‘n’ roll and country music. I will also be playing acoustic gigs. Watch this space!