- 18 Apr 03
Read three brilliant archived features on Dublin troubadour Damien Dempsey on the eve of the release of his second album Seize The Day
"Bob Marley speaks the truth, and I like his positivity and the way he's political. He seemed to care about what was going on in the world, and the normal people. I think the way you can use music to educate people, can make a change. That's what Marley did. I see myself as a student of his. He educated me through his lyrics, said things that you wouldn't hear on the news.
"I was in my teens and I was going through a bit of a phase, drinking a lot and doing E tablets and getting into street fighting and getting depressed. Then I'd listen to Marley and it lifted me out of it. I'd like to try and do the same for kids, that my music would give them a bit of hope and strength, and they'd know that I was telling the truth and I wouldn't lie to them."
When you read the above quote from Dublin's own Damien Dempsey, it's easy to understand why one of the bigger music-industry breaks he's had involved no less than Christy Moore ringing him up, professing admiration and offering him the odd support slot or several. Damien's new album, Seize The Day, comes out next month and, from the wee bits of it we've heard, is ab-so-lutely brilliant, surpassing even the staggering achievement that was his 2000 debut, They Don't Teach This Shit In School. Musically, he's world-class; philosophically - as you will see in the interview below - he is one of the last of a dying breed, and a bit of a national treasure. He's our Artist Of The Fortnight. Read: