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Conor Hamilton Interview – A Star In The Making

Conor Hamilton SingerSongwriter Promotional Image

After selling out the Academy, on Abbey Street lower, here in our wonderful city of Dublin, Conor Hamilton has a lot to be thankful for. Aged only 15 he is already making a name for himself as a singer songwriter and he has a few video’s up on his YouTube channel.

So how did this young man at the young age of 15 become so popular? Well it didn’t happen overnight that’s for sure. Ever since Conor was young he showed a great interest in music, epically the guitar. I would say music runs in his family. His dad James was in his own band while growing up, and Conor’s sister Taylor is already a trained (Soprana-Opera) singer despite still being younger than him.

Taylor, James and Conor Hamilton @ FRG hq (frg.ie) December 2013

IMAGE: A Family Thing! – Taylor, James and Conor Hamilton @ FRG hq in December 2013

On Thursday 5th December, 2013, Conor along with his Dad, James, and his sister, Taylor, came down to our (HQ) here on James Street here in Dublin for a chat with myself Alan Finn.

Recently I saw Conor perform at the 2013 SWICN Youth & Community Awards which, may I say, I along with other members of the Fountain picked up awards for our work in the voluntary section in the Dublin 8 area. The awards where been held in St Catherine’s Hall on Thomas Street. Conor along with another young lady by the name of Courtney Curran did solo acts.

Conor did two songs in which he wrote himself. He also informed everyone that the following Saturday after the awards he would be performing at the Academy, to a sell-out crowd.

What struck me about Conor, was his ability to play the guitar and sing at the same time, whilst bringing the stage alive with his bright and bubbly personality. He performed two of his tracks and brought the place alive.

He informed me when he was younger growing up, firstly just off the North Wall, he used to listen to the likes of Phil Lynott, aka Thin Lizzy, another great Irish performer who sadly passed away in the 1980’s, Ocean Colour Scene, and rock music. It was then that Conor then picked up the guitar. He was only 7 years of age.

I asked Conor did he ever do covers. He said yes sometimes when he is playing at a gig he would stick in a cover in between his own material. Conor went on to tell me that he sell out gig was totally amazing. He felt there was a really great atmosphere, not only on stage, but in all the building. Conor went on to say there was an awful lot of hard work in the months prior to the gig, with the all the planning that was necessary for such a high profile gig. This included working on his set, and and booking some musicians. Conor does sometimes bring in session musicians to give the very best while on stage.

In the New Year Conor will be recording at a high end of the market with a producer who is currently working the Irish group the Script here in the Temple bar recording studio’s. Conor hopes to achieve his dream with the music business a very tough business to break. He does not want to get stuck in a 9 to 5 job, and who could blame him when he has so much to offer.

Conor, who is originally from East Wall, having spent his early childhood years there before moving across the city to Pearce Street, another great area here in Dublin. Despite Conor only been 15 he is doing voluntary work, on a Saturday Morning with a place called Cross Care helping to dish out meals. Conor wanted to give something back in to the community so he went to his local community centre, St Andrews of Pearce Street, who found him this great Saturday job helping the homeless.

His schooling on a primary level started off close to his East Wall home, at a school on Marlboro Street. His next school was in Glassnevin, in the north of Dublin, called Scoil Chaitriona, an Irish School.

Conor went on to say although there is more traveling to do now, that he attends Scoil Chaitriona, but he said it’s worth it. Connor went on to say it’s a great school, and that they really support him and his music. There were times when the school not only let him rehearse on the school grounds but let him use their music room too.

I asked Conor where would he like to be in 5 or 10 years time. His reply was with one good solid foot in the door that opens up to his musical career. He would also like to have at least 2 albums released at this stage, as well as enjoying himself generally.

Conor likes to chill out and listen to underground music that’s not mainstream. He likes to listen to American underground groups, and at the moment he likes a group from the states called Passion Bit.

Passion Bit are a real mellow group, you can just totally chill and relate to them. I asked Conor where would he like his next sell out gig to be hosted, he replied the O2, and why not!

Conor would like to offer this little bit of advice to anybody who is involved in the music business – never give up. It’s a very tough business but keep going and most importantly never let anyone ever tell you that you can’t do it.

Taylor and Conor Hamilton @ FRG hq (frg.ie) December 2013

IMAGE: A Supportive Sister! – Taylor and Conor Hamilton @ FRG hq in December 2013

Conor like to hang out with his mates when he is not recording. His favourite pastime is Skate Boarding. His mates are also support Conor and at times slag him off over him been a pop star. But Conor just laughs it off, as mates often slag their mates.

Conor’s family have been great in supporting him, and even his younger sister Taylor helped with selling and promoting Conor to all his female fans. There was an awful lot of work here not only for Conor, but for the whole family. They went around local shops and put up posters in the run-up to the Academy Sell out gig. Conor just wanted to say thank you to his family his parents and his little sister Taylor who was amazing.

It’s not unusual for someone to knock on the Hamitlon’s door in the evening requesting to have their photo taken with Conor, or an autograph or both. If this is the way of life for Conor now the world is his Oyster.

Conor already has video’s up on you tube and one of them is called “Day Dreamer” (see above). The video was shot in and around the streets of Dublin, and was also released on ITunes giving Conor his 1st taste of super stardom. The song peaked in at number 11 in the Irish Music Charts. The song moved very quickly once it went up, this was followed by another good tune called “Lately” which peaked in at number 18 in the Irish Charts.

Another song, “You Got It In You”, will be released very shortly by Conor, and this was one of the songs I seen him perform at the awards. This was the only time I ever saw Conor perform and he had the place rocking.

Dylan Clayton who has his own radio show on RICC Radio in Ringsend and runs the Ringsend Rock School, used to be Conor’s old guitar teacher in school. The radio show is called Rock From The Dock. Dylan has been a great help to Conor. Apart from his excellent tutoring, he has given Conor some radio time for his recent releases.

Conor also states that he doesn’t look at any artists and try be like them, instead he has his own unique style and it suits him.

As I have just pointed out Conor played to a sell out gig, in the Academy, a very promising start for this 15 year old, and the gig wasn’t put together as a flash in the pan. This is probably 10 years or so in the making.

Conor is currently using a recording studio out in Dunlarioge, belonging to a lady and a daughter to Moya Brenann who is a member of the Irish Group Clannad. The lady’s name is Ashling Jarvis, and Conor would like to thank her greatly for the usage of her studio.

Conor will be performing at the ring side, which is the National Boxing Stadium here on South Circular Road, Dublin on Friday 20th December 2013 tickets are €10.00 and can be bought at the door. There will also be local drama, and dance groups supporting Conor.

Conor would like to wish everybody, from his family to his fans, a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Conor’s Links: Website / Facebook / Twitter / YouTube

And here is Conor’s latest official music video released…

And finally, here is a photo of Taylor Hamilton (Conor’s Sister), James Hamilton (Conor’s Dad) and Conor himself, when they came to FRG hq to have this chat with me.

Taylor, James and Conor Hamilton @ FRG hq (frg.ie) December 2013

IMAGES: The images taken at FRG hq are credited to Alan Finn/FRG.ie

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