Wild Place is Jack’s first release since 2019’s Ivory Towers and the first full album
release since his acclaimed debut, Dreamcatcher, which entered the Irish Top 5. In the
intervening years Jack has established himself as one of Ireland’s finest songsmiths and
a live favourite.
For the recording of Wild Place, during the lockdown, Jack and his band based themselves
in Triskel Christchurch in Cork and used the wonderful acoustics and Triskel’s grand
piano to great effect. The results are probably Jack’s most endearing work to date – the
songs emanating from a soulful and folk-inspired place.
Jack first came to prominence with his ode to misunderstood youth and growing up gay,
‘Silence’, became a torch song for the Irish Marriage Equality Referendum and won the
Nashville Songwriting Competition (judges included Tom Waits and Bill Withers).
Chosen as a 2019 headliner for Other Voices, Jack was featured prominently in the
television series (most recently part of the Home special in December, featuring himself.
Loah, Villagers, and Denise Chaila) and his collaboration, ‘New Day’ with electronic
artist, Kormac has nearly 500,000 views for its award-winning music video.
“Wild Place has songs of love and loss, beautiful misfits, nature, and wilderness,” says
Jack. “There’s freedom and rage in there, alongside questions on race, friendship, a
still-Covid world, giving the glad eye, my dreams, and sea swimming. The piano and
vocal are centre, but there are elements of folk, roots, blues, Americana and chamber
music.” There’s also a song, ‘Strange Bird’ written about the last year and a half – a
drone recording a town during the lockdown and all we’ve lost and gained. It’s influenced
hugely by John Prine – “When John Prine died during Covid, it was a Bowie or Cohen or
Prince moment – I was heartbroken without knowing him personally – his lyrics and his
style meant so much, and his songwriting always floored me. There’s a Steinbeck or
Mark Twain quality – he says so much without being flowery.”