Declan De Barra

BiografieHello, dear underpaid and overworked Music Writer, thanks for being interested enough to read this. I hope your coffee, tea or blood of virgin panda bear tastes good as you peruse this.
Well, album number three – “Fragments, Footprints & the Forgotten” – is being being pressed right now. So here I am, back at the keyboard bashing out this bio.
As you well know, dear reader, biographies for musicians are usually 90% publicity-speak, therefore 90% bullshit. Hence, I write my own bullshit-and-hormone-free biographies.
“Fragments, Footprints & the Forgotten” is the third release under my own name. The 11th if you count the various bands I served time in.
It was recorded in the same room in Dublin as the last two albums. My landlady couldn’t be fucked to fix my shower so I inherited a spare room with a shower and lots of space to record and drive the neighbours upstairs demented.
I did everything on this record apart from mastering. Written, played, recorded, mixed and artwork created by me. D I Y, or more accurately, D I Y B Y B (do it yourself because you’re broke). I had no guests because I couldn’t afford any and felt bad asking the same good people to step up again. This worked out for me in the end. It forced me to use my voice for sections where I heard strings. And forced me to push it out a little with what instruments I had in order to have a wee bit of sauce to go with the meat and potatoes.
It’s different. I am glad. Life is too short to live it on repeat.
The artwork is based on old photos I had seen of immigrants to the States around 1916. I often use photos to feed ideas for songs, painting and scenes in scripts. It all seemed to make sense as the Irish economy tanked and started to choke on the fat of bankers. Once more young Irish men and women were leaving. I was leaving. I am in fact, typing this from Los Angles where I now live. When I listened back to the songs, Black Crow Call and A Storín etc. it all made sense. So the artwork is a narrative of an immigrant arriving in a strange country and it not going so well.
The record is released by Black Star Foundation in Sweden with whom I have a great relationship. I couldn’t be arsed dealing with labels otherwise. It usually turns sour. Especially when I don’t listen to my gut. Black Star Foundation have been great though. We are both doing this for the love of music rather than the truckloads of money which arrive at our doors most weeks. (We send them away with petrol bombs – “Fuck you, man! I don’t need your stinking money! I will live on air!”…well actually Emil from the label says it in Swedish. Just imagine the same, but with the Swedish Chef from the Muppets shouting it. Did you know that most Swedes don’t know of the Swedish Muppet chef? Did you know in The Netherlands, Sesame Street’s Big Bird is actually blue not yellow and is called “Pino”. End of days my friends…end of days.
I am glad Emil from the label suggested printing vinyl as well for this release. I think the artwork is going to look brilliant, printed on heavy recycled card. There is no plastic involved, all clever folding. Somewhere a baby seal is shedding a tear…somewhere a polar bear is licking it’s lips.
Yes, my friend, the record “industry” is on fire. Pass the petrol and marshmallows. No one knows what is going to happen, it’s all very exciting.
I will create music and play for people as long as I can. I honestly don’t give a fuck about anything other than singing hard and true. Touring is hard and expensive and grueling, but getting to sing for people and play with inspirational musicians is a fucking honour. That hour or so communicating with others and sharing that moment when music makes the hairs on your neck stand up, makes every other shitty hour melt and disappear. I will keep going as long as I can carry a guitar.
I will be touring Europe in March/April and again later in the year. I will try to get to the rest of ye around the world in due course. I will probably stay at your house, drink your coffee, cause friction when your Man/Woman/Dog falls in love with my disheveled visage and celtic bohemian way with words. I will eat all your food. You will ask me to say words like “Thanks and This and That” just so you can hear me say “Tanks” “Dis” and “Dat”. I will agree but secretly stand over your bed with an uneaten avocado sandwich and hover for 8 hours unbeknownst to you, like that lady from Paranormal Activity. Or not.
The rest of this year will be spent writing more music and writing more TV shows and Film scripts (It’s a long story, but basically I accidentally became a TV writer while touring and being bored out of me fucking brain in hotel rooms). Who knows, maybe the world of writing for TV may someday even allow me to hire a quartet for an album of strings and voice. Fingers crossed.
I was born in Bonmahon, Waterford, Ireland with a club foot. I lived in a caravan for the first few years and then a bus. Then they fixed my foot and I used it to kick people who tried to kill me while I worked as a bouncer to feed myself as a musician.
I have degrees in fine art, electronic design and multimedia (still don’t know what that is).
My first real crush was Nichelle Nichols aka Lt. Uhura from Star Trek.
My motto for life is Fuck the Begrudgers.
My favourite colour is “blood of racist”.
My favourite number is 5.
My first dog’s name was Hiawatha. I grew up on Tracey’s hill. So my pornstar name is Hiawatha Tracey’s Hill. This is why my career in porn was a travesty. I am not vegan but should be.
When not writing music, or dealing with the insane world of writing for a living, I can be found out the back of a surf break singing Bad Brains songs at the top of my voice and winking at other surfers. That way they think I am insane and I have the waves to myself. Works in queues too.
There, I think that about does it. Eat a biscuit and go to lunch early. You deserve it.
If you have any questions feel free to email me mail*AT*
Much love,
Declan.Quelle: www


Fragments, Footprints And The Forgotten - Cover
Declan De Barra bezeichnet seine Musik selbst als “ Indie Folk Noir“, womit dem Iren der seltene Fall einer treffenden Etikettierung eigenen Schaffens gelingt.