The highly positive reviews of Glen Hansard‘s second solo album ‘Didn’t He Ramble‘ in September 2015 have gone a long way towards the announcement today that the collection of songs are in contention for ‘Best Folk Album’ at the 58th GRAMMY Awards.
Fresh from finishing a US Tour (as well as performing at a certain church in Dingle over the weekend), the GRAMMY nod is testament to Glen’s reflective approach to songwriting.
The album, which was recorded in New York, Dublin, Chicago and France, has been universally agreed to be his most intimate and features guest appearances by John Sheahan (Dubliners), Sam Beam (Iron and Wine) and Sam Amidon.
Originally principal songwriter and vocalist/guitarist with The Frames, Glen went on to create The Swell Season and the unmistakable soundtrack to the film ‘Once’ which both his and Markéta Irglová’s song ‘Falling Slowly’ won an Academy Award in 2008 for ‘Best Original Song’. In 2013, the Broadway adaptation, Once, The Musical, won eight Tony Awards including the top musical prize itself. His debut solo album Rhythm & Repose was released in 2012.
Oscar and Grammy winning songwriter and President and Chairman of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), Paul Williams, and Oscar-winning songwriter and composer, Glen Hansard, were special guests last night at an event hosted by the US Ambassador to Ireland, Kevin F. O’Malley, in collaboration with IMRO, celebrating the craft of song writing and music copyright.
Minister for Diaspora Affairs, Jimmy Deenihan TD, was also in attendance at the event which took place in the Ambassador’s residence in Phoenix Park as part of the Creative Minds series. Creative Minds invites prominent US artists, writers, filmmakers, digital culture innovators and musicians to share their experience with young Irish audiences.
As part of the event, Glen Hansard was honoured with a special award by IMRO and ASCAP in recognition of the ongoing success of his music in the USA.
Speaking of the event, Paul Williams, President and Chairman of ASCAP said: ““It’s clear that Ambassador O’Malley has enormous respect for Irish music and understands the value of our fruitful collaboration… both creatively and economically. He spoke of the great influence Irish songwriters have had on American culture and noted the continuing efforts of IMRO and ASCAP to protect copyright and celebrate our music. The Ambassador’s residence felt like home last night. To all of us.”
Keith Donald, Chairman of IMRO added: “The whole night was about creating cross-Atlantic creativity links and all thanks to Ambassador O’Malley for his kindness in putting the event together.”
Niall Stokes, editor of HotPress, led the conversation with Glen and Paul around their approach to the craft of song writing and the role of copyright in music today, before the audience of invited guests were treated to intimate acoustic performances by both songwriters.
With special guests
Paul Williams Oscar and Grammy-winning songwriter and President of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) and Glen Hansard Oscar-winning songwriter and composer
Featuring live performances
ASCAP and IMRO will also present a special award to Glen Hansard in recognition of the ongoing success of his music in the USA.
Date: Tuesday 14th July
Time: 6:00pm – 8:30pm
We have a limited number of places available for this event. If you would like to attend please email your name to A member of the American Embassy staff will then contact you with an official invitation and additional details for the event.
Please include the word ‘Ambassador‘ in the subject matter line when you are sending your email.
Paul Williams is an Oscar, Grammy and Golden Globe winning Hall of Fame songwriter. He is a recipient of The National Music Publishers President’s Award and is President and Chairman of the Board of ASCAP (the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers).
Recognised as one of America’s most prolific and gifted lyricists and composers, Paul’s standards have been recorded by such diverse musical icons as Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, Ella Fitzgerald, Ray Charles, David Bowie, Daft Punk, Tony Bennett, Sarah Vaughn, Johnny Mathis, The Carpenters, Luther Vandross, REM, Mel Torme, Anne Murray, Diana Krall, Gladys Knight and Diana Ross. His songs have also found favour with Country legends including Chet Atkins, Kris Kristofferson, Charlie Pride, Crystal Gayle, Lynn Anderson, The Oak Ridge Boys, Diamond Rio and Neil McCoy.
When asked which song is his favorite, Paul is quick to respond, “That’s easy! It’s “The Rainbow Connection”. It’s a thrill to hear my words interpreted by such inimitable talents as Willie Nelson, the Dixie Chicks, Sarah McLachlan, Judy Collins, Jason Mraz and Kermit the Frog!” “The Rainbow Connection”, from the children’s classic The “Muppet Movie”, is one of two Paul Williams’ songs that grace the American Film Institute’s list of the top movie songs of all time; the second, “Evergreen” is from the award winning Streisand/Kristofferson remake of A Star Is Born. Additional song scores include the cult favorites Phantom of the Paradise and Ishtar, as well as “The Muppet Christmas Carol”, “Bugsy Malone.”, and Emmet Otter’s Jugband Christmas, the latter of which has now been adapted for the stage. His recent work has remained wonderfully diverse, from creating and writing the songs and story for Disney’s A Muppets Christmas: Letters To Santa, to writing with the Scissor Sisters, to penning the music and lyrics for Garry Marshall’s theatrical sensation Happy Days.
Although most people came to know the witty Mr. Williams as one of Johnny Carson’s recurring favorites on The Tonight Show, or as an actor in dozens of films, television comedies and dramas, it is his musical legacy that continues to inspire. “We’ve Only Just Begun”, “Rainy Days And Mondays”, “You and Me Against The World”, “Just An Old Fashioned Love Song”,”Let Me Be The One” all remain pop classics and are performed by Paul in venues from New York to the Philippines.
Publicly lauded for his work as a songwriter, performer, actor and humanitarian, Paul predicts he’ll be remembered for playing Little Enos in the Smokey and the Bandit trilogy and for his lyrics to “The Love Boat” theme, although it is the lyrics from Bugsy Malone, recast for a recent Coke commercial, that aptly sum up his philosophy: “You give a little love and it all comes back to you; You’re gonna’ be remembered for the things that you say and do”. As a devoted husband to writer Mariana Williams and proud father, Paul considers his son Cole, and daughter Sarah, to be his best work.
Glen Hansard is an Academy Award winning singer songwriter, and principal vocalist/guitarist for the bands, The Frames and The Swell Season. Born in Dublin, Ireland, Glen quit school at age thirteen to begin “busking” around town. During these early years Glen honed his craft on the street during the day and refined it for the stage at bars and pubs at night. Many of the musicians he crossed paths with during this time would go on to become band members, collaborators and lifelong friends.
At the age of seventeen, Glen was signed to Island Records. In the same window of time he was picked play the role of Outspan Foster in the Alan Parker film, The Commitments. The film went on to huge success. After his obligations to the film were done, Glen gathered some busking friends, christened them The Frames, and recorded their debut, “Another Love Song.” Now charting over 20 years as a band, having released six full length records and logging countless miles, The Frames have established themselves as a dynamic and powerful live band that is not to be missed.
The Swell Season was born out of Glen being asked to write music for a film his friend and former band mate Jon Carney was making, originally entitled “Busker”. Re-christened, Once the movie tells the story of a guy and girl who meet, fall in love, make a record and then go their separate ways. Glen was commissioned, along with Marketa Irglova to score the movie.
Together the two wrote “Falling Slowly” which won the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 2008. Following the success Once, The Swell Season released a follow up record, Strict Joy and have done a number of worldwide tours.
In June 2012 Glen released his over 20 years in the making debut release, Rhythm and Repose. That same month, Once the Musical, which had debuted on Broadway in March of the same year won 8 Tony’s, including Best New Musical. The musical is still running on Broadway and spent most of 2013 touring North America. In 2014 and into 2015 the musical will continue to make its way around the world. Glen is currently working on the follow up to his solo debut.