We've Always been

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Sidebar

10
Mon, Aug

Musicians
Typography

THE CORONAS SET JULY 31 FOR WORLDWIDE RELEASE OF “TRUE LOVE WAITS,” FIRST NEW ALBUM IN THREE YEARS, AFTER PANDEMIC DELAYS

For Ireland’s Popular Band, the ‘New Normal’ includes Releasing a New Album During a Global Pandemic and Sharing a Name with Its Cause

Animated Video for “Lost in the Thick of It” Duet with UK Singer-Songwriter Gabrielle Aplin Created Amid Covid-19 Isolation

Single “Cold” Will Be Serviced to Radio in U.S. Shortly

In early March, Ireland’s popular band The Coronas headed to Dubai for their traditional annual pre-St. Patrick’s Day shows. There were already rumblings of something ominous via Google alerts of the band’s name and some precautions were beginning in Dubai, but nothing prepared them for their return home just a few days later. “It was a strange time,” explains the band’s frontman Danny O’Reilly from Dingle in southwest Ireland where he has been isolating for much of the time since. “We could feel the uneasy atmosphere as Ireland was just about to go into full lockdown. It was very unsettling; it just didn’t feel real.”

Within days, the band’s carefully planned year for supporting the release of TRUE LOVE WAITS, their long-awaited sixth album, was completely upended by a virus with which they, coincidentally, share a name. The Coronas took the irony in stride, at first tweeting Corona Beer seeking advice ‘for a friend.’ “But,” O’Reilly continues, “when we could see that the virus was going to change everyone’s lives, it became less of an unfortunate coincidence and more of a serious worry; not about our name, but about the seriousness of the virus.”

While their beer tweet remains unanswered, The Coronas are forging ahead, setting the release of TRUE LOVE WAITS for July 31 and making plans for some socially distant release celebration events.

TRUE LOVE WAITS is the band’s first new album since their Irish chart-topping TRUST THE WIRE in 2017 and follows several multi-platinum-selling albums that have made them one of Ireland’s biggest and best-loved bands. The name hurdle aside, the band, after 13 years together, began 2020 as a trio after guitarist Dave McPhillips unexpectedly left the band. That resulting quandary led them to approach their new music with fresh eyes.

“In retrospect, the shock of Dave leaving the band helped us get a clearer picture of what we wanted the new album to be,” explains O’Reilly. “When we accepted that we weren’t going to be the same band without him, it was easier to let the new songs lead us in ways we wouldn’t have thought of before.”

Two songs had already been recorded in Los Angeles the previous year with Hozier and PJ Harvey producer Rob Kirwan when Danny, bassist Graham Knox and drummer Conor Egan reassessed the path forward. They then recruited George Murphy, the acclaimed engineer and producer (Ellie Goulding, The Specials, Mumford & Sons, among others) who had engineered their previous two albums, and headed to his prestigious Eastcote Studios in London to get to work. “George knows us very well,” explains Danny. “He understood straight away what we were trying to do, and he knew exactly the kind of album we wanted to make.”

But the album only really began to take shape once a raft of new songs emerged. Key to the process was a coterie of new co-writers. “I co-wrote a little on the last two albums,” says Danny, “but this time I was up for anything. I took snippets of ideas to several musician mates from other bands to see what we came up with together, and that’s how we hit on some of the new sounds and different song structures. With fresh input, you’re forced down new paths, and it’s also great sharing that excitement in the room when you know that there’s something special in the idea you’ve just created together.”

To start with, the title track, “True Love Waits.” was written with Cian MacSweeny, frontman of Dublin trio True Tides, one of The Coronas’ favourite bands and their recent support act. Acoustic guitar and bright synths blend to create an atmosphere of dreamy optimism, while the lyric – Take a chance – could as easily apply to The Coronas’ new outlook as to a new relationship. MacSweeny also collaborated on “Light Me Up” for which he contributed backing vocals.  

Ryan Hennessy and Jimmy Rainsford of the Irish band Picture This, another Coronas favourite, collaborated on the song “Heat of the Moment,” while “I Think We Jinxed It” was co-written with Cormac Butler, who also co-wrote the song “Haunted” and produced it at Black Gate Studio in Dublin.

Co-writers on “Never Ending (On Your Side)” and the album’s first single release, “Find the Water,” are Danny’s talented sister Róisín O and her musical partner John Broe, who have worked together with the band on past projects. Additionally, Broe directed the music videos for “Find the Water” and “Haunted.” Broe’s cinematic vision pitted Danny against the stark landscape of the Southern California desert near Joshua Tree National Park for “Find the Water,” while the video for “Haunted” was shot earlier this year in a seemingly abandoned cabin accessible only by trudging through the deep snows of Bulgaria’s winter before international travel became another challenge.

Another single, called simply “Cold,” is a majestic spine-chiller that shapeshifts on piano, percussion and synths. About accepting an important decision as the right one and moving on, it will be serviced to radio in the U.S. shortly. “It’s a song about trying to slap yourself out of your sadness and doubt about a decision you’ve made,” explains Danny. “There’s always that ‘what if?’ feeling in the back of your mind. The song is about acknowledging that feeling, but not letting it take over.”
“Lost in the Thick of It,” a duet with UK singer-songwriter Gabrielle Aplin, was co-written with her and her partner Alfie Hudson-Taylor of the band Hudson-Taylor during a visit to their home in Brighton last summer. “Gabrielle and Alfie have been friends of mine for years,” says Danny. “Writing with them was very organic and really enjoyable.”
 
The video for “Lost in the Thick of It” is a product of the pandemic shutdown, with all participants isolated in different locations. “Our director, Bjorn Franklin, adjusted his original pre-lockdown idea, and the simpler version with the amazing animation turned out even better than I thought the original idea could be.”

 
For O’Reilly, the global lockdown necessitated self-isolation and some degree of introspection. He headed to idyllic Dingle where his family has getaway home and where he often goes on his own to write anyway. “I came for what was planned to be a few days and have ended up staying for months now.”
 
He emerged only briefly in April to perform a poignant solo acoustic version of “Heroes or Ghosts” on the Irish weekly talk/variety program, The Late Late Show, while safely socially distant from the show’s staff.


Danny also regularly posted music under the heading Self-Isolation Vibes. “When the lockdown began, I found it hard to write so I began doing nightly cover songs on the band’s Instagram page,” he explains. “It was important for me to have something to work on, and it gave structure to my day. At the beginning, it was more for myself than for anyone else. I picked songs from artists I love and respect, and I tried to put my own spin on the songs so it wasn’t just karaoke. There were plenty of outtakes of songs that I love that just didn’t really suit me.

"I realized it’s important to do whatever helps you get through this unprecedented time, and not be too hard on yourself if you’re not being as productive as you had hoped. I’ve even been cooking and baking all the cliches!”
 
The downside has been the separation from family and friends. “Not being able to see and spend time with my family has been the hardest part,” says Danny. “My grandmother passed away (of natural causes) just before lockdown and not being able to have a proper, well-attended funeral and hug my father was difficult.”
 
Additionally, band meetings and other business gatherings have been relegated to Zoom and other devices as The Coronas plan the rollout of TRUE LOVE WAITS on their own label imprint, SoFarSoGood Records. They have also congregated on Zoom for live performances, including a version of “LA at Night” from the new album with each of the band members in their own locale.

 
Rehearsals for a special album rollout event that can no longer take place in person will also be conducted remotely.  “We really miss playing together, and we can’t wait until we can get back out on stage.”  While The Coronas plan to tour extensively once again in Ireland and internationally in support of TRUE LOVE WAITS, they are forced to continually monitor the state of the pandemic in the various locations where they are scheduled to play later this year to ascertain the feasibility of going forward with the shows.
 
The Coronas’ live shows, particularly in their native Ireland, are known for their large, enthusiastic audiences who stand shoulder to shoulder and sing along to many of the songs. During these celebratory gatherings, O’Reilly has been known to suggest that fans give the person next to them “a little hug,” even if they don’t know them. In this age of coronavirus, the gesture has become sadly worrisome.
 
“I really hope we can get back to that point where I can once again encourage people to do that,” says Danny. “Everyone keeps talking about a ‘new normal’ and things will never be the same again, but I think experiences like live concerts and festivals are so important to people in so many ways, as is letting go and embracing them and the other audience members. I’m hopeful we’ll get back to that eventually.”
 
In the meantime, he would just settle for being able to go out for a nice meal with a big group of friends and playing some music with his band. Something we’re all hoping for.

About Memoir for Me

 

August linked Edition 2020

SUBSCRIBE: Buy 1 get 2 - Buy 2 get 4! - Buy 3 get 6 years!

SUB SPECIAL

The Dearborn Restaurant

July 2020 Linked Edition

Advertising Rates 2020

Shop Irish!

ARTIST
Bryan Boylan
ASSISTED LIVING
Aishling Companion Homecare
Homecare Angels

ATTORNEY

Murphy & Smith Ltd
Dwyer and Coogan
Healy Law

Miller & McGing Law Firm 773-467-8000
BAGPIPERS & DRUM CLASSES

Chicalba Bagpiping

BAKERY
Doughs Guys Bakery
BANKS
First National Bank of Brookfield

Marquette National Bank
BANQUETS
Gaelic Park
Irish Am Heritage Ctr
BEAUTY SALONS
Appearances Pk Ridge
 847-825-7615
Hair by O'Hara & Friends-Hometown
BOOKS - IRISH
TheIrishBookClub.com
BRICK REPAIR/REPLACEMENT
Shamrock Tuckpointing
CARPET CLEANER
Sheila's Carpet Shampooligans
CATERERS
Harrington's Catering & Deli
Unforgettable Edibles
CHARITABLE ORG

Mercy Home
IrishCommunityServices
CAULKING & SEALING
Shamrock Tuckpointing
CHIMNEY REPAIR

Shamrock Tuckpointing

CHOIR
Irish Heritage Singers
COTTAGE RENTAL
Cottage Mary Rose
Dingle Cottage: 312-399-8793
Gurtenard Hse - Listowel Co Kerry
CRUISES

Andy Cooney
Phil Coulter Tranquility Cruise
CULTURAL ORGANIZATIONS

Chicago Gaelic Park

iBAM!
Irish Am Heritage Ctr
Irish Am Society Co Will
Irish Heritage Singers
DANCE SCHOOLS

McNulty School of Dance
Trinity Irish Dance
ENTERTAINERS

Chicalba Bagpiping

Paddy Homan
The Larkin Brothers
Catherine O'Connell
Joe McShane
Whiskey Mick Irish Rock
FESTIVALS

Arlington Heights
Dublin

IAHC
Indianapolis
Kansas City
Milwaukee
Naperville Aug 7-8 2020
FINANCIAL PLANNER

Corrigan Financial
FLORIST

Garland Flowers
FUNERAL HOMES

Blake-Lamb

Gibbon's Funeral Homes
Roberty J Sheehy & Sons

GAELIC YOUTH FOOTBALL
773-719-2847 Jerry
GARBAGE REMOVAL
Flood Brothers Disposal
GOLF COURSES
Palos Golf
GRAPHIC DESIGN

Laura Coyle 773-343-7268
GROCERIES/MEAT

O'Connor's Market

Winston's

HOTELS

The Irish Cottage 1 866 CU-IRISH
HUMAN RESOURCE CONSULTANT
James Fitzgerald
IMMIGRATION SERVICES

IrishCommunityServices
IMPORT SHOPS
Ann's Irish Gifts

Celtica Gifts 773-784-7712
Donegal Imports
Gaelic Imports
Irish Shop
INSURANCE

American Family-Joan McKee
Riordan Insurance
JEWELERS

H. Watson
MUSIC SCHOOLS
Chgo Academy of Piping/Drumming
Irish Music School of Chgo
MYSTERY SHOPPER
Cathy Cooney-Millar 224-944-9654

PARTY PLANNERS
That Special Event

PENNY WHISTLES
Michael Burke
PHOTOGRAPH CAPTURING
Memoirs for Me
PHYSICAL THERAPY
SPORTS-ORTHOPEDIC
Athletex
PLASTERING

William McNulty & Son
708-386-2951
PUB/RESTAURANT RECRUITER
Cathy Cooney-Millar
PUBS & RESTAURANTS

Ashford House
The Celtic Knot
Clancy's Pizza Pub
Corcorans
Emerald Loop
Fifth Province
Fiddler's Hearth
The Galway Arms
James Joyce Irish Pub
Lizzie McNeill's
Mickey Finn's Brewery
Peggy Kinnanes
R
ed Apple Buffet
Six Penny Bit
Vaughan's Pub

REALTORS
Dreamtown - Patrick Carney
Koenig & Strey
Mary Ellen Considine  773-769-2500
RESTAURANT/HOSPITALITY RECRUITER
Cathy Cooney-Millar 224-944-9654
SPORTS CLUBS

Chgo Celtic Soccer Club
stbrigids.chicago.gaa.ie
ST PATRICK'S DAY
St Patrick's Day Parade
SWEATERS

Anne's Irish Knits
TABLE RUNNERS
All 32 Counties
TELEVISION-CABLE

Irish Journal 708-366-4665
THEATRE
Late Nite Catechism
TOURIST ATTRACTION
Ronald Reagan Boyhood Home
TRAVEL /TOURS
Authentic Irish Tours
BestIrishTours.com
Gadabout Travel
Shay Clarke - Inter Trav Corp
TUCKPOINTING
Shamrock Tuckpointing
VACATION RENTALS
Dingle Cottage
Cork - Cottage from $450 weekly
Don at 608-274-1180
WASTE REMOVAL
Flood Brothers Disposal
WEDDING PLANNER
That Special Event

WEDDING VENUES
Gaelic Park
Irish Am Heritage Ctr
Palos Country Club
WOOD FLOOR SPECIALIST
The Sexton Group

Irish Ann

Advertisers

Paying For
Instructions

Irish Book Club