6th June – Tommy Sands

Singer, songwriter and peace activist Tommy Sands is the very welcome guest at Irvine Folk Club on Wednesday 6th June. It’s almost three years since Tommy was at the Club and it will be good to hear this richly talented man again.
Tommy’s songwriting has drawn the admiration of Nobel Poet Laureate Seamus Heaney and the father of Folk Music, Pete Seeger. Joan Baez, Kathy Matthia, Dolores Keane and Dick Gaughan are among the artists who have recorded Tommy’s ‘Daughters and Sons’ – a song that includes the gem of a phrase ‘sow the seeds of justice’.
Born in Mayobridge in Co Down in the foothills of the Mourne Mountains, Tommy was part of a family where everyone played a musical instrument and says that when the guitar was introduced to the house, it was viewed with suspicion! Tommy engages audiences with his songs, his stories and his charm. He weaves legend, humour and thought-provoking messages into his songs – many of which are about helping shape a better world.
Although he performs his music on stages all around the world, he takes pride in in taking his music to dark corners of society eg teaching prisoners in Nevada from underprivileged backgrounds to write their own song with which to defend themselves in court. For his outstanding work as a musician and ambassador for peace and understanding, the University of Nevada awarded him an Honorary Doctorate of Letters. Last month, Tommy was performing in Iran, again using music to try to sow seeds of social change and peace.
At his home in Rostrevor, he has instigated a series of ground-breaking events under the banner of The Music of Healing where people of apparently opposing viewpoints are encouraged to see one another as neighbours rather than enemies. Sadly, it was at one such event last year that Tommy suffered a mini-stroke, from which he has happily recovered.
Make sure that are at Irvine Folk Club on Wednesday 6th June to hear Tommy Sands, writer of such songs as The Music of Healing, The Age of Uncertainty and Who Knows Where The Wind Blows. The Club meets at Vineburgh Community Centre in Quarry Road. The Club starts at 8pm and it’s BYOB.