The Music Sparkle.

New Music.

We have some fantastic new Summer tunes from my favourite Irish Country music stars. I’m waking up each morning humming one of these, the tunes are so catchy and the video’s are excellent.

First up is the lovely John McNicholl with his song “The Brightest Road” written by Derek Ryan.  I was lucky enough that on the release day, June 22nd, when it was number one in the Irish country charts and number five here in the UK country charts, to hear it performed live as John was appearing in Birmingham that evening.  It was like a huge party at the dance as we all celebrated the single being number one.  So proud of John and happy for him to reach the number one spot, a fantastic song.



Next up is Michael English with his summer tune “Then it’s Love”, I absolutely love this. Unfortunately Michael didn’t sing this one at the concert I attended at the end of April (that’s another blog post I need to do), the video is very summer like. I find myself singing this one almost all day long, I really need to learn more of the lyrics though than just the chorus, I’m driving folk crazy repeating the same thing over and over 🙂


Derek Ryan just keeps rocking out those hits, here he is with another country/pop type of tune “Hayley Jo” which has got folk dancing up and down the country, he really is just pure class.  I really like this one, I just can’t work out who is Hayley Jo in the video?


My last selection for today is from our homegrown, Irish country music superstar Nathan Carter.  Self penned with his singer/songwriting manager John Farry “Give it to Me” is a sure fire summer hit for Nathan.  Great song, fun video and Nathan Carter, what’s not to love?!!!

I hope you have enjoyed these fab four summer hits from some of my favourite Irish music stars.  I have a few more to share which I will leave for a future post.

With love and music sparkles xx

Life Sparkles

All At Once.

Nothing for ages and then a flurry of activity in a short space of time. I was very lucky in that once again some of my favourite Irish Country Music stars were appearing in Birmingham and I was able to attend. My fabulous boyfriend stayed in with Mom and Dad so that I could get out to see my absolute favourite John McNicholl.

It was the Eve of St Patrick’s Day that the dance was on hence the heart shaped, shamrock tattoo ☘️

My friend and I had a little Snapchat fun before we left for the dance, I just love how it removes wrinkles.

We also celebrated Mom’s birthday that weekend, so many flowers, just beautiful and they are still around the house looking good.

Derek Ryan, absolute class singer, songwriter, entertainer had a sell out concert on the Sunday night and it was just fantastic. A great mix of his old material and the newer material and we were up dancing in the aisles. I hear he will be back in November for a dance so that’s a definite date for my diary.

The beautiful Tipperary Songbird, Louise Morrissey, who celebrates thirty years in Country Music this year is touring with Derek Ryan. A real treat to see and hear her amazing voice.

No further gigs now until April. I have three planned; Nashville, Daniel O’Donnell and Michael English. I make the plans in the hope I get to carry them out. As you know, if it wasn’t for Country Music I might possibly go crazy!

Snapchat Hippie Mode…

The Music Sparkle.

Dancing Feet and Cowboy Boots.

It’s a while since I managed to post a catch up blog, it’s on my to do list. However, last night I managed to get out to see my favourite Irish music star, John McNicholl and I just had to post a few pictures tonight.

John doesn’t visit Birmingham too often and as I am unable to travel to see him in other parts of the UK or Ireland, I have to wait for him to play my city and hope I can get out to the dance. It takes some strategic planning these days to do so, especially as it entails a late night but things worked in my favour last night and Cinderella did go to the ball. Cinderella also checked her phone every five minutes but that’s how it goes these days. I was so glad I was there. John has a fabulously rich voice and sings not only Irish and Irish Country music but also some Rock and Roll, Sixties and last night we had some Neil Diamond too. John has boundless energy on stage, a real entertainer. He has a great band of musicians with him, the music is wonderful. I was up on that dance floor almost all night, I made the most of the freedom I was enjoying, I felt like me again, if that makes sense? My knees are paying the price today though…

There are a lovely bunch of people I meet at John’s gigs and I’ve made some wonderful friends over the past four years. I was really feeling the love last night from them all. They had missed me posting on Facebook (I had no idea I hadn’t posted there since August), they were concerned about me, was I ok? Was I getting out? I’m still feeling emotional from the genuine concern and caring about me from these friends. I feel so loved by them and that feels so warm and comforting.

John himself is a true gentleman and I am so happy to count him as a friend also. Rumour has it that he is back in Birmingham in January so fingers crossed I’ll be pulling on the cowboy boots and heading for the dance floor again then.

So, a few photos from last night, I was so happy, I made them all have their photo taken with me.

John McNicholl

John McNicholl

John McNicholl

Shane who plays Guitar in John’s band.

Johnny who plays the drums in the band.

My friend April and myself.

I’m wearing the dress I bought for my Graduation which I ended up deferring until next year. However, I’m so happy with how I look for a change, that 22 lbs weight loss makes such a difference. No wonder I was a diva on the dance floor, I had the energy to do so!!

© @aurorasparkles 2017

The Music Sparkle.

It’s Friday!

In the words of Derek Ryan…It’s Friday!  This is one of our favourite Irish country tunes and Mom and I sing it each Friday and we sing along to the video when we watch it on You Tube.  Another favourite is from Michael English “Friday at the Dance” made especially enjoyable as my cousin is in the video (such a name dropper).

So, as it is Friday evening, it is pouring with rain here in Birmingham and I’ll admit, fairly chilly for a Summer evening, I decided to share with you some of my favourite, get you on your feet, Friday night, Irish country music songs.

Mam and I will be singing along to this one as Dad joins in when he can.

Yee Haw!!

An absolutely wonderful gentleman, with a great heart and a fabulous voice.  I love the Irish dancing in this video…Let’s Dance!

My favourite Irish country song of last Summer – just love the Summer vibes all over this video.

Thankfully I’ve had many a good night out in Temple Bar on my visits to Dublin, a great song from Nathan Carter.

A fantastic toe tapper, get up and move it tune from Lee Matthews.

I hope you have enjoyed my selection of Friday night Irish Country songs and I hope too that they have uplifted your inner sparkle and put a spring in your step.  Turn the music up and keep it country.

The Music Sparkle.

Musical Dreams and Keeping it Country.

Recently I have been lucky enough to attend the gigs of three of my favourite Irish singers, John McNicholl, Nathan Carter and Derek Ryan. I grew up listening to Irish country music, Mam says I was trying to sing long before I could talk and used to pull myself up in my cot to wiggle to the music, long before I could walk. My uncle was in an Irish Showband and after playing in Birmingham on the night of my christening, the whole band arrived at my parents flat and played all night. 

I was always singing around our home, my parents used to ask why I couldn’t learn my schoolwork like I could learn the top twenty. I suppose I just loved songs and singing. Visiting my family in Tipperary as a teenager, my cousin and I were allowed to the dancehall in Dundrum to see the Irish Showbands on a Friday night. Tony Kenny, Red Hurley and my absolute favourites, Gina, Dale Haze and The Champions.  Once home I would pretend I was Gina, I sang to their records, bought a tambourine like Gina and our lounge was my stage.

When I was 19 an Irish music promoter telephoned to call me for an audition but my parents didn’t tell me, for three years!!! I was mad as hell but looking back I can see they were looking out for a very niave young girl.

As life moved on, I grew away from my roots and started to go clubbing, I loved dance music and dancing but I hardly ever sang. I lost touch with the top twenty, with my roots, my culture. Life was work, work, work and dance music. Dancing on a Friday night released the stress and pressure of the week. Housework was done to dance music, that trance beat had an euphoric affect on me and still does. A little bit of Swedish House Mafia is good for the soul.

Three years ago I joined the choir at Mass. I love it, it has compleltely enriched going to Mass for me. I always enjoyed singing the hymns but being part of the choir is just awesome. Around the same time, Mom was reading the Irish paper and seen John McNicholl so we decided to look him up on YouTube. Within a flash I was right back to my roots, I think it was lying asleep, like Sleeping Beauty, ready to be awakened by a handsome man, John McNicholl was that man!!

From there we discovered the other new, exciting and fabulous singers and now we listen to Irish Country Music all the time. We watch Irish Country Music shows on TV and when I can I attend the dances and concerts when our favourites are in town.

Last year I decided to have some vocal coaching, to see if I do actually have a voice. I love it!! I love it with a passion. Singing and songs have again taken over my mind and with life as it is currently, this is a huge escape from the anxieties, stresses and worries of the day. I have learnt so much about pitching, resonance, different voices, breathing…I am once again dreaming of being on that stage singing my heart out.

Below are some pictures of me with my gorgeous Irish music stars, I think you’ll guess my favourite 😉 Look their music up on You Tube, they are so talented, each different to the other and all brilliant.

Thank you for reading my blog 😀

Derek Ryan.

John McNicholl.

Nathan Carter.

Making dreams come true 💖