John Hogan, April 17th
‘Ireland’s Prince of Country Music, John Hogan celebrates 30 Years in the music business this year. On Easter Monday night (17th April) in Claremorris Town Hall, John will bring his many fans from the West of Ireland on a Trip Down Memory Lane as he hosts a spectacular show featuring many of his hits over the last three decades, from his very first hit recording ‘Brown Eyes’ to ‘Buddy & Me’. This show will be full of nostalgia as on the night John will be backed by the fabulous and much sought after Ryan Turner Band. Other featured guests include Carmel Sheerin, country legend Paddy O’ Brien (also celebrating 30 years in Country Music) and Glór Tire Contestant Caitriona Ni Cheannabhain, Gary Gamble and Camillus Egerton.
Kilbeggan born John Hogan always had an ambition to become a professional entertainer, but like other before him, the genial Westmeath man suffered one set back after another chasing what seemed like an elusive dream. All that changed in 1987 as John set off to a recording studio with a guitar in a car-board box and a song in his heart. Spending his mortgage money recording a song entitled ‘Brown Eyes’, little did he realise the impact it would have on his life. Overnight he became a household name and made chart history having a Top 10 hit before ever doing a live gig. The day job was packed in as he took to the road in a blaze of glory as a professional entertainer in April 1987; It’s now 30 years since the unmistakeable voice of the man from Croghan hit the air-waves. His musical journey has been one of ups and downs. It’s a journey that has taken him far and wide, from the Caribbean island of St. Lucia where he had a Number 1 hit with his own self penned song ‘Stepping Stones’, to the USA, Portugal, Scotland, the UK and the hills and bye-ways of Ireland, North and South. It was a far cry from his days working as a supervisor in the Briquette factory in Croghan.
With a catalogue of musical memories, John Hogan’s home is where his heart is, no matter where he travels. All he ever wanted to do was sing, write songs and entertain. It is something that has been in his blood since childhood. During the first decade of his music career he had full house signs night after night in every venue he played. He was the new music sensation. This success was enviable, there were gigs galore and album followed album. But alas, disaster struck in the late 90’s. With his career at its peak, he was forced to put it on hold as his hectic lifestyle travelling and performing took its toll on his health.
John was at the top of his game when he lost his voice, his vocal chords were badly strained. The man that was dubbed ‘Ireland’s Prince of Country’ had hit rock bottom and he watched everything tumble. With a young family to support it was a difficult time.
One of the things that John Hogan is blessed with is determination and the will to succeed at anything he turns his hand to. On recovering and returning to the scene five years later, he scaled down his band size to a three piece outfit, and continues to play leading venues north and south. In recent times a lot of his work involves guesting at shows on the concert scene not only in Ireland but in UK, Scotland and USA. Having developed excellent stage craft over the years, the reaction this award winning entertainer receives is nothing short of phenomenal. His voice is now in top shape and people are amazed at his wide vocal range. A talented songwriter John Hogan is a country boy at heart, happy tending to his beautiful garden when not writing songs and entertaining. Simplicity in life is what he has adhered to and believes in. He is a guy who has got his priorities right as far as the music business is concerned. With him there are no half measures. He is there to entertain and that’s what he puts his heart and soul into doing. Listening to him on stage and on disc, one couldn’t but admire the quality voice he is blessed with. He has the happy knack of being able to captivate with his style of singing in particular his yodelling
To mark this milestone in his music career, John will be performing in a number of shows around the country in the coming year kicking off in Claremorris Town Hall on Monday 17th April (Easter Monday).