Cheynne Murphy

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Celtic Heart Tour Mid-North Coast

The genesis of Celtic Heart, from local Byron Shire singer-songwriter Cheynne Murphy, begins last century, as the song tells, in “ a place called Knocknageehe, County mayo”. This was the birth place of Cheynne’s Grandfather Pa Murphy who grew up with his seven siblings and endured the famine with his family. His Mum died early and the Catholic tradition deemed it inappropriate to marry again so his Father (Cheynne’s Great Grandfather) brought up all the children on his own. Cheynne recently visited the farm with his two brothers and father on a family bonding trip. As Cheynne recalls: “We were travelling down these very narrow lanes, using our smart phone to chart a course to the old homestead. Remarkably we found it and as we stood outside the place, a local farmer with gumboots above his knees, and a thick midlands accent, asked us if we were lost and then proceeded to invite us all in for a cup of tea and a look around”.

This profound meeting inspired a song-writing session in the coastal town of Clifden, at Abbyglen Castle, resulting in an inspirational acoustic folk rock ode to Cheynne’s Grandfather and Celtic ancestral roots. Beginning with delicate finger picking guitars, Irish pipes, sublime harmonies and climaxing with an infectious chorus and atmospheric drums. Celtic Heart has some traditional Irish music elements but is a contemporary production. “I want to reflect these Irish roots but I’m an Australian singer-songwriter and I don’t want to pretend to be a folk traditionalist. That being said, Byron local Matt Connolly played Uilleann pipes which are Irish bagpipes giving it a traditional Celtic flavour”.

Debuting his first EP ‘Firesongs For the Soul’ at the 20th Anniversary Bluesfest, it was described by Rhythms Magazine as an “earnest, sprawling folk rock record”. His recent album ‘A Horse Called Freedom’ was described by Fender Australia as “music in the tradition of other timeless homegrown artists – from Paul Kelly to Pete Murray, the Black Sorrows to the Waifs. Catchy, original and unmistakably Australian”. With strong critical acclaim, television appearances and some major festival gigs, Celtic Heart is Cheynne’s latest album and he is showcasing it with a trio that includes the title track’s co-producer Mark Heazlett and drummer, Mat Akehurst (Walrus and the Carpenter).