Leo McCauley releases his
debut album '57 Ghosts'
LOCAL singer / song writer
Leo McCauley has just released his debut album, '57
Ghosts'. It follows on from his three song EP 'The Man
Who Burst the Bubble' released in 2017.
Leo explains, "As this is my debut album, it is a
collection of songs written over a number of years.
Eleven different songs but maybe all with a life theme.
I find it easier to write songs about events or stories.
Iíve been told sometimes that my introductions can be as
long as the songs themselves. However itís good to put a
song in context especially for someone who is hearing it
for the first time.
I released a three song EP 'The Man Who Burst the
Bubble' a few years ago and I found it a great
experience that has stood me in good stead
with this album."
Leo continued, "The opening
track 'Blink of an Eye' is about a near death experience
that happened to me on Moville Green at the back of
the Foyle Hotel when I was about 10 years old. Letís
just say that without the assistance of my childhood
friend Thomas OíFlaherty, I might not have survived the
My son James and myself have filmed a video for this
song based around the beautiful Moville Green and
Shorefront. 'Blink of an Eye' is going to be the first
single from the album. This along with the video will be
released in a few weeks."
Other songs on the album
'Valley of Shame' and 'Beauty and Grace' are more
personal about loved ones who are no longer with us
'Familiar' another song which Leo has performed many
times has been now given an almost country arrangement
and still sounds as fresh as when he wrote it ten years
'Even Sylvia Smiles' is a refreshing tribute to a great
young woman. The song 'Gathering' is a homage to Irish
people coming home to spend time and money in their owl
sod despite the begrudgers.
'Saviour' is a gospel song which is also a tribute to
the brilliant Moville Gospel Choir in which Leo was
involved with as a singer and musician.
'The Man Who Burst The Bubble' and 'Israeli Rain' are
the political themed songs in the album focusing on the
bank collapse ten years ago and the ongoing tragedy that
is Gazza in the Middle East.
'Sundown over Blanket Street' is a moody and reflective
song Leo wrote about a mystical place that is not too
far away. An earlier version of this song was recorded
and released last year in collaboration with 'The Gerstockers' - a local super group with origins in
Moville Library (Larry, Philip, Paul, Seamus, Jason,
Harry, Marty & Leo) facilitated by Moville and District
Family Resource Centre and Donegal Education & Training
Leo gives a copy of his new
album to Nadine Coyle.
Leo added, "57 Ghosts (of
Duffyís Cut) is about the massacre of 57 immigrant Irish
workers who sailed from Derry to work on the railways in
Pennsylvania in 1832. It is a song I wrote almost nine
years ago. I performed it many times with Moville Gospel
Choir locally and also in Ardara Church at the
graveside John Ruddy, one of the victims of the
massacre. My original home studio recording of it also
been played on radio in the US. I suppose it is a
fitting song to label my collection of eleven similar
but disparate songs.
All eleven songs would not have turned out as they did
without the magnificent production of Brian McMonagle
Jim Walker at Beechwood Recording in Derry as well as
the brilliant musical and vocal accompaniment of Gerry
McNeilly, Marianne Ashcroft, Hannah Peoples and Patricia
McLaughlin. I owe them all so much.
When we were recording the album at Beechwood Recording
in late 2018 and early 2019 the guys in the studio felt
the album had an early 1970s feel about it. Well I canít
argue with that as many of influences come from that
period (Neil Young, Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Van
Morrison, etc). However, I like to feel that later more
modern influences can be detected (ie Ryan Adams,
Crowded House, U2, Christy Moore, Paul Brady). But as the
owl saying goes music is in the ear of the beholder.
They are all new songs and I hope people will enjoy them
for what they are.
Itís amazing how music is evolving. Traditionally you
had to get a record or a cd out to stores for people to
buy to listen. Nowadays with the digital age many people
donít even have a cd player. In fact many modern cars
donít have cd players. So my album is now available on
the digital platforms... Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes,
Google Play, YouTube Music and Amazon Music.
The streaming is brilliant when you get the hang of it
but itís still frustrating when that owl Alexa bird
still canít recognise my accent."
Leo's album was recorded in
mid 2019 but he spent a lot of time getting the artwork
and metadata information right. Leo said, "I would like
to pay tribute to Alan Reid Design of Stranorlar - a
long time collaborator of mine for his stunning album
artwork. I also can't forget the brilliant photography,
video and drone work of my son James. This will
be evident when we release the 'Blink' video.
How do I do a launch? Lockdown has caused so much
problems for live performances. However the same
Lockdown has seen so much innovation in people getting
music collaborations out there. I have a few ideas about
a live launch but at this stage I would like it as a
full band structure. So watch this space for upcoming
The '57 Ghosts' CD is now available to buy locally at
Gillenís Shop, Centra Garage and McCauley Properties in