20th album for Kieran

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Kieran Halpin plays Chichester on the back of the release last year of the 20th album in his 38-year career.

He will be at the Chichester Inn on February 29 as part of the Roots Around The World world music series.

“Albums for me always begin when I think it is time to get another one out. The Devil And His Dealing came out last October. I tend to put one out every two years, two and a half years. For this one, I wrote all the songs in June.

“For an album, I put two weeks aside and write all the songs. Other people will do it over a long time, but this is the way that works for me. It’s the way I have done the last six or seven albums. I can sit down and make myself write. It’s the reason that I write so quickly. I know that Elvis Costello writes in exactly the same way. He goes away and writes for three weeks.

“I have always been quite prolific, but doing it this way means that each album takes on a different flavour. This one is actually quite an optimistic album. Songwriters have the reputation for being miserable b*******, and I have done that myself, but this one is quite an optimistic album on the whole.”

The first track is the title track, very much traditional in style with second and fourth lines repeated. The second is God Has No Plan which points out that there is no point blaming anyone else for all the troubles in our lives. It’s down to us to do something about them.

There is also a song for his 17-year-old daughter, plus an optimistic song for his long-term partner: “It’s about long-term friendship and how it feels to be together for a long time.”

There is also a song for his five-year-old daughter - though it is not the first time the family has featured on an album for Kieran.

“I was lucky enough four years ago to go to Australia for a full year. When I came back from that, I wrote an album that was somewhat reflective of my family and also my upbringing, where I came from. On the album before that, there were a couple of songs that were quite political.”

All of which means that when he looks back, the albums feel like entries in the diary of his life: “Each one is about what I was thinking and how I was feeling at the time.”

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