Three Monkeys Online

A Curious, Alternative Magazine

Roesy in Interview

Another aspect of Roesy to have been inspired by his travelling is his association with the human rights organisation Amnesty International. This connection began a few years ago when he auctioned his album art work for Amnesty and continues to be important to him. “I feel after having travelled in some of the third world countries where Amnesty are active in seeing human rights issues monitored, this is in some way my little bit in return.” Roesy is the first to admit, however, that he is not a political creature at heart, “in general I'm lost when it comes to politics. I mean, I can see what's going on in the world and follow the likes of that lunatic in America but outside of it I find it hard to tie together some of the language they use. For me Amnesty is my little contribution to the majority without a voice. Other than that, politics tends to go over my head”.

Apart from his musical endeavours Roesy is also a talented painter who has exhibited at the Galway Arts Festival and the Wexford Opera Festival, to name but two. In 2004 alone he sold over fifty paintings and in the past he has auctioned off some of his work to raise funds for Amnesty. For those interested in seeing his art there is a virtual gallery at and also the graphics on each of his albums are also his own work. His twin loves, art and music, often collide for Roesy and indeed his painting seems to provide an emotional port in the storm when the business side of the music industry gets too much. The art side of things is also financially useful with proceeds from paintings sold having funded 80% of the costs involved in producing and releasing Only Love is Real. Roesy also recently discovered that the two also have a creative overlap. “Though they exist independently, at the Wexford show I could for the first time see a similar theme that runs through the two, one of the invisible realm, I suppose you'd call it.”

There are also more visible influences on Roesy's music. Shades of Dylan are apparent in songs such as No More Lie, while he professes a profound admiration for Tom Waits and even covers Waits' Take It With Me on The Spirit Store. Recently he has also covered Nick Drake's Love Rescue Me for the charity album Even Better Than The Real Thing III and, more surprisingly, he has reworked Blu Cantrell and Sean Paul's Breathe with some success. Now who says folk and bling don't mix!

Future plans for the Offaly man include another Irish tour starting this month and a songwriting workshop at the Market House in Monaghan on March 29th. The latter project appears to be something Roesy is well qualified for as he spent three months of last year teaching on a FAS Music Performance course in Tullamore. This seems to have been an eye-opening experience for the musician and one which has, in his own words, “enthused me on to write more than I could have wished for”. If this year's tour schedule proves anything close to 2004's then it is very likely that the Roesy roadshow will turn up in a town near you. It's hardly on a par with roaming around Bolivia but sometimes even the most familiar paths can provide inspiration.

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