- 08 Sep 20
As part of our nightly YouTube series celebrating Van Morrison's 75th birthday, Ultan Conlon performs 'Bulbs', and shares his reflections on Van's music.
Widely considered one of Ireland’s most captivating artists, Ultan Conlon has shared stages with the legendary likes of Jackson Browne, John Grant and Patty Griffin, and performed duets with Glen Hansard and John Martyn – the latter recording one of Ultan’s early songs, ‘Really Gone’, in 2005. The Galway singer-songwriter released his fourth studio album, There’s A Waltz, earlier this year.
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When I was 20, I was living in Boston for a while – and I had a Discman, with The Best Of Van Morrison on CD. I listened to that record on trains and buses, and walking all round Boston city that Autumn. It was a great place and time to connect with him.
It had a great impact on me at that time. Before that, I was into grunge and indie bands. This was one of my first introductions to a solo performer/songwriter. That’s when I knew I wanted to be a singer-songwriter, and not operate within a band unit.
I love that he paints pictures of where and how he grew up. They're like little flashes of fever dreams, condensed into perfect songs. It’s not easy to achieve that perfection, and still manage not to sound over-cooked or over-analysed. I'm proud to be from the same island as Van Morrison. There's a certain Celtic connection I feel there
I love the record Veedon Fleece and ‘Bulbs’ has got to be one of my favourite tracks on there. His version has a serious skip in it.
Watch Ultan Conlon perform 'Bulbs' below:
Take a look at the spectacular line-up for this week on 'Rave On, Van Morrison' below:
- Tues Sept 8, Ultan Conlon Bulbs (7pm); Leslie Dowdall Philosopher's Stone (8pm)
- Wed Sept 9, Wookalily Wavelength (7pm); The Riptide Movement Brown Eyed Girl (8pm)
- Thurs Sept 10, Joy Crookes Madame George (7pm); Uly The Street Only Knew Your Name (8pm)
- Fri Sept 11, Eleanor McEvoy Songwriter (7pm); Jack Lukeman The Way Young Lovers Do (8pm)
- Sat Sept, 12, Ciaran Lavery Country Fair (7pm); PowPig Natalia
Hot Press has also published a Van Morrison Special Issue, to coincide with ‘Rave On, Van Morrison’, featuring written contributions from the legendary likes of Hozier, Sinéad O’Connor, Gary Lightbody, Damien Rice, Imelda May and Damien Rice, as well as special homages from international artists Brandon Flowers, Steve Van Zandt and Matt Berninger. In addition, you'll find the highlights of our recent exclusive interview with Van – who discusses the Belfast he grew up in, ‘Gloria’, Jim Morrison, Lenny Bruce, the real inspiration for Astral Weeks and his extraordinary work as a songwriter.
This historic publication is a must-have for Van Morrison fans all over the world, and is available to order now.