THE aptly named ‘Summer Love’ is the latest single to come from Strabane singer/songwriter Brian Hassan.
Set to launch a new single every month from now until the end of the year,’ Summer Love’ comes hot on the heels of ‘Two Young Lovers’ which he released in July.
The latest venture follows on from the success of Brian’s first album ‘Tales from Home’, and marks a change in direction for the Strabane man who has moved from folk to acoustic rock.
Speaking about his diversion from folk Brian explains, “Tales from Home’ got such good reviews and after its release I was speaking with producer Peter (NeonNoise) Doherty from Strabane and we started to look at a change in direction.
“I had written ‘Two Young Lovers’ and he had a few ideas about it, so we mixed it up a bit included some saxophone etc and produced this new single which is more in keeping with the Springsteen/ Seger genre.
“It is going back to my roots. While I don’t like to tie myself to one genre this is the type of music I listen to,” he explained.
“I played ‘Two Young Lovers’ back at the start of the year when I opened for Bagatelle in the Ulster Hall. I didn’t realise but Liam Reilly had been sitting beside the stage and he told me he really liked it, so that kind of spurred me on to release it. It’s already getting some airplay on local radio and the feedback has been positive.”
Having secured a grant from the Arts Council in response to the difficulties faced by local musicians during the Covid-19 pandemic Brian has another exciting project in the pipeline.
“I was lucky enough to secure some funding and as a result I’m going to be working with acclaimed producer Frank Gallagher who has worked with the likes of Phil Coulter, Shirley Bassey, James Galway, Sinead O’Connor… so I’m very excited about that.
“I have sent him off eight songs that I have written and then he will suggest what style he things we could produce them in, it could be American swing, jazz, folk, American country – whatever he thinks suits.
“I enjoy mixing it up and try not to get pigeonholed in to one style so I’ll be up for trying whatever Frank suggests.
“The idea then is that we release one single a month from now until the end of the year.
“It’s a brilliant project to have, especially with the way things are in the music industry at the moment, we have no idea when we will be able to get back to live gigs so for now I’ll be putting all my energy in to this,” Brian added.
With a wealth of musical experience under his belt Brian started off his musical career with a rock band called Freeway, after the break-up of that band Brian looked to a solo career. And since then he has performed with scores of well-known Irish acts including Brian Kennedy, Declan O’Rourke, Sharon Shannon, Donal Lunny, The Fureys, Bagatelle, Frances Black, Declan Sinnott, Tommy Fleming and Sinead Lohan to name a few. Brian’s talent has also saw him impress on the global stage and over the years he has opened for such acts as 10CC, Dr Hook, The Beach Boys, Jose Felciano, The Drifters, Smokie and The Overtones.
• Check out Brian’s latest offering which is now available on iTunes, Spotify, Amazon etc.