TOMMY FLEMING, Irish singer songwriter renowned as The Voice of Ireland is returning to Australia for the third time in May and to celebrate the release of his first new album in six years BEGIN, out 5 April.
Tommy has overcome the most serious of setbacks, boasts a legion of dedicated fans and has proven his place in the world of entertainment.
Unquestionably one of Ireland’s most successful entertainers, TOMMY FLEMING’S hugely successful career spans over 20 years and has been celebrated with album sales of over 1.5 million, invitations to represent Ireland at major international events, sell-out concerts and adoration from his audiences.
Known for not only his powerhouse voice but also his quick wit and humour, the humble and proud Irishmen is looking forward to his return to our shores on the back of his sell-out 2012 season. He will be performing at twelve selected cities and towns across the East Coast of Australia beginning 3rd May.
Comparing his homeland with Australia, Tommy commented on the similarities he had seen on his last tour Down under in 2011, “The Australian audiences are sincerely the best. They get so involved and become part of the show and they completely get my sense of humour. It’s like we have this understanding. We’re probably all related somewhere along the line. We have the same sense of humour, we love our beer and we don’t take ourselves too seriously.”
Tommy, born in Aclare Co. Sligo, Ireland in 1971 was the youngest of six children, and started singing while still at school. While fronting his own local band, a chance encounter with Phil Coulter at a charity function near his home lead to a big break onto the world stage such as Carnegie Hall where Tommy appeared as a guest singer on Phil’s USA tour. This then lead to the singer entering into the music business as a solo artist.
Tommy signed his first solo record deal in 1996 and went on to release a total of 5 albums, “Restless Spirit”, achieving Double Platinum; “The Contender” achieving Triple Platinum; “Sand and Water” achieving Platinum status; “Live at St Patrick’s Cathedral” achieving Gold status; “The Collection” (ten years) achieving Multi-Platinum status.
This aside, it has not been an easy road to success for Tommy. Just when things were really starting to take off for him in 1998, he was almost killed when he was involved in a car accident while on a promotional tour near his native Sligo. Narrowly escaping from a burning car, he was left with a broken neck and a metal brace, putting both his life and career in serious jeopardy.
As part of his long road to recovery, Tommy made a decision and took six months off and flew to Africa to work with the Irish aid agency GOAL where he was a field operative in war torn and famine stricken Sudan.
After his recovery and reflection Tommy’s career again escalated and in 2004 Tommy produced the PBS special “Voice of Hope” CD/DVD live from the Basilica in Knock Shrine. This was the first time an event of this magnitude ever took place in the world famous Knock Basilica. Released in 2005 “Voice of Hope” has to date achieved Multi-Platinum status selling in excess of 200,000 units.
In March 2012 Tommy was struck again with a huge blow and which he describes as the toughest year of his and his family’s life with the loss of both his parents when they unexpectedly passed away within hours of each other. In the months that followed Tommy took a long break from his career and evaluated his life, his music and what steps he now needed to take, and now he returns to his more traditional folk roots releasing a collection of emotional heart wrenching songs to make up his new album BEGIN.
The album, which Tommy describes as the most cathartic work he has ever done, is a collection of 15 songs inspired by the influences he has received throughout his career and is a personal tribute to his beloved Mother and Father. Tommy admits that recording and working on the album helped him come to terms with the death of his parents and gave him the strength to BEGIN again.
The new album BEGIN is accompanied by a bonus DVD an in depth documentary “Behind the Voice” chronicling Tommy’s life in music, with a rare glimpse into the personality behind the performer.
“That’s one hard act to follow! I hope he doesn’t take up acting.” (Carnegie Hall December 1996)
“The best version of Danny Boy – bar none.” (The bottom line music club New York)
Mike Moran (former music producer/songwriter with Queen):
“A voice that makes you smile and weep at the same time, a pleasure to work with.”
Bishop Desmond Tu Tu:
“That voice is truly an instrument of passion.”