SONGWRITER Niamh Kelly took her time about making a debut, but she was impressive when she performed on stage before family and friends at the upper room in Brady’s in Maynooth recently.
A worker with the Naas Youthreach for the past fifteen years, the Maynooth resident took a long time to bring a smouldering interest in song to the stage, opting to make a debut to celebrate her birthday.
The full nature of maturation process is best described by the brief story of one of the best songs of the evening, “Hey Little Sister.”
The subject of the song is Niamh’s little sister, Emma. Emma, now 29, was present at the Brady birthday bash. Niamh wrote the song when Emma was just six and it got its first “airing” at the party. “I never did my own stuff,” said Niamh of her previous efforts.
She just “suspected” it was good. “Family like it and I decided I would give it a go,” she said.
But she has now and is determined to bring the material to a wider audience.
Niamh got a guitar from Santa when she was seven and has picked up a musical gene or two from her day, Joe, a social worker, who used play in pubs.
Now living in Maynooth with Stephen McCarthy, her partner of seventeen years, Niamh has two very bright daughters, Ailbhe and Blaithin, both of whom were lapping up reading material on Kindles at the party. “They read a book every two days.”
The girls take part in the gifted children CTYP programme at DCU.
The good news for Niamh is that in these days of the interest, one’s output can reach wide audiences fast.
She will have a new website up in the new year to sell online and already there has been interest in her songs from a New York source. “I have a three year plan,” she says, adding that it is flexible.
On her birthday, she was accompanied by Brendan Gilligan, her cousin, Ciara Kelly Gilligan, Gareth Eason and Eoin Leonard.
The group are likely to be in the picture into the future but Niamh is keep her options open for all their sakes.
A huge Billie Holliday fan, her own musical tastes also extent to Django Django and Ham Sandwich.
Born in Ballyfermot, she lived in Artane until she was eighteen and has been in Maynooth for the past twelve years. “I love living in Maynooth,” said Niamh.
The bottom line for her musical adventure is summed up by her. “I don’t want to say I never tried.”