Archive for the U2 Category

Foy Vance…

Posted in christianity, Foy Vance, gigs, U2 on August 31, 2007 by Phil Alcorn

There are few things that can move me to tears these days… I don’t know why that is, maybe it’s just a part of ‘growing up’… But there are a few things in this world that do still cause that well of emotion inside of me… I experienced one of them tonight…

Foy played in the Black Box tonight, as he had done the previous two nights, and will do again tomorrow night. After a slight change of plans, the troop that headed down was myself, dougie, katy and jen, and we were accompanied by simon and ross… Being quite far up the queue, we got incredible seats, right by the stage pretty much…
The support act was a guy called Ken Haddock – very talented guy, quite a similar style to Foy (they’re good friends too…)… He gave a very good performance, and amusingly called Foy and his troop out to support him in a couple of his songs – they were spectacular!

So, after a short intermission (long enough to buy another round of drinks) Foy, Joanne and Jules came to the stage. What followed was simply incredible… Yes, I may be biased, seeing as he is my favourite artist, but I firmly hold to the belief that no-one throws a gig quite like Foy – and I also hold firm to the statements I made in a recent post about being at a gig of Foys is like encountering God in a very unique way (I am in no way deifying Foy, merely commenting on his songs and performance – enabling an encounter with the divine).
I’m not going to give a rundown of the setlist here, nor give a report of the gig – all I will do is highlight a few points that particularly stood out. Enough people will write a report soon enough.

Foy’s banter with the crowd is always a bonus – he is so at home with his ‘home crowd’. So much so, we had a sing-song near-on the end of the gig. This is a moment that moved me to tears (well, watery-eyes…)… Foy suggested we have a sing-song, and began playing guitar and singing without amplification (no mics or amps), and before I knew it, I was singing along with the whole room to I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For… it was a beautiful moment, hearing the whole room sing together to a calm acoustic version of the U2 classic. When we reached the lines ‘You broke the bonds and You loosed the chains, carried the cross of my shame, of my shame… You know I believe it’ I couldn’t help but feel emotional – I can’t describe how special that moment felt…
The second emotional moment occured during the penultimate song, Come On Up To The House – we were all on our feet, stamping and clapping away as Foy belted out the old gospel style classic – God was there as we sang along… maybe not everyone felt it, but I did…

I’m still quite in awe of the whole thing…

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working on it…

Posted in christianity, Foy Vance, gigs, U2 on August 29, 2007 by Phil Alcorn

Still organising my thoughts into a coherent pattern (with further backup from todays events), I decided NOT to do a soapbox-style shoutout tonight… rather, I will just share my excitement about my plans for this thursday night…

If any of you have been reading this for a while, you will have heard me talk about the musical genius that is Foy Vance… well, he is playing at the Black Box in Belfast on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday night this week… so myself, 3 friends, and 296 people I probably don’t know are heading down on thursday night to hear the master at work.

Foy seems, to me at least, to be one of those artists who really crosses the border between ordinary gig and genuine memorable experience… The thing that sets him apart I feel, along with other artists such as U2, is how much of himself he truely devotes to his music. The likes of U2, and Foy, although some may heartily disagree, cross the divide between average ‘pop song’ and a true emotionally stirring ballad. They take an emotion or event and run with it lyrically, with hard hitting truth and raw honesty, and merge that with musical talent I can only dream of… And to witness them perform (although I have never seen U2 live, only recordings) is to witness something exceptional. The amount of energy and emotion they pump into their performance is a sight to behold. The gig becomes more than a gig – it becomes a brief encounter with the divine. And I don’t believe it’s going too far to say that… both U2 and Foy have immersed their faith in their work, resulting in songs that touch the soul and stir the spirit… when they perform, I believe they are engaging in acts of worship… Engaging with God in emotions and thoughts about diverse experiences and events, and using their gifts to do so…

Thats all I feel I really have to say right now… You may agree or disagree, but those are my thoughts. I’m looking forward to thursday night…