donie o's story
The Man Behind The Music
From Roscrea, Tipperary, in the Irish midlands, DONIE O is a musician with a country boy's soul but a heart full of rock 'n' roll! Old school, rock 'n' roll, that is, the kind that goes all the way back to when icons like Chuck Berry and Buddy Holly were opening up a whole new world to millions through their music.
An accordion player, Donie O marries his love of Irish country and rock ‘n’ roll with contemporary pop hits, favourites, classics, and all-time greats.
Inspired by the energy and excitement of music that moves people and changes the way they feel within the space of a few bars, beats, and words, Donie O always sets out to achieve the same when he takes to the stage. He combines those essential elements of rock 'n' roll with the honesty, integrity, and work-ethic of a man who grew up in the middle of Ireland and appreciates the true value of the most important things in life; family, friends, treating people right, and of course, as the title of his debut album clearly indicates...dreaming your dreams. And indeed, chasing them, too.
Donie O’s latest release is his take on George Strait’s evocative and much-loved hit, AMARILLO BY MORNING which he recently performed before a full-house at the 10th Annual Hot Country TV Awards Concert.
"There's just something about those opening lines," remarks Donie O, "that really hit home. 'Amarillo by mornin'/ Up from San Antone / Everything that I got / Is just what I've got on.' It's a song about a rodeo-rider on his way from San Antone to Amarillo where his next competition is. I've always had a great love of horses myself, and I owned two in particular that I'll always have the fondest memories of, Buddy and Rex. I never tried my hand at rodeo, mind you! But I think it's the fact that in this song, he's on the road at night, that's what makes it resonate with so many musicians as well."
In October of 2021, with Donie O's vocal at perhaps its most passionate yet, calling to mind the likes of the Las Vegas in Templemore, the Carlton in Kilkenny, the Atlantic in Tramore, or maybe the Crystal in Dublin, he released the song BACK IN ’68. Written by his fellow Tipp man, the late John O' Connell, BACK IN '68 - in normal times - would have a touch of lonesome hidden in its grooves anyway, name-checking as it does, so many of those venues of lore and legend nationwide where an incalculable number of hearts first danced their way into range of Cupid's bow.
But in Donie O’s hands, its message was not that our memories are all we have, but far from it, in fact. No, its message then - in 2021, and still today as we readjust to a world where Covid and its effects are still there to be seen - is that we still have so many memories yet to make. And further, that come tomorrows yet unseen, we'll have more songs like Back In ‘68, reminding us that while we might glance back every now and then, we live moving forward. And we keep smiling, and we keep dancing as we go.
In June of 2021, Donie O released his suitably reflective version of the classic EARLY MORNIN’ RAIN by the great Gordon Lightfoot. Produced - as always - by his long-time studio collaborator, Peter Maher, this single once again bore all the hallmarks of a Donie O song, taking a track known and loved by a certain generation of music lover, and bringing it to a whole new audience by putting his own unique twist on it.
Early Mornin’ Rain was the follow up to Donie O’ August 2020 single, A PICTURE OF YOU, the lead-off track from his eagerly awaited second album, scheduled for a late 2022 release.
DREAMING MY DREAMS - his debut album - was released in the early summer of 2019, and features the singles; Yellow Ribbon Medley, Pretend, and Somewhere My Love.