Luka Bloom - Out of the Blue - album cover
February 6th 2020 was the date of my last solo show.   It was in a lovely festival in Geneva.
Then the virus came.  During 2020 I just surrendered to this new world, and let go of the need to be out there doing the gigs.
Steve Cooney had just released his beautiful cd  of old harp tunes.
I picked up my guitar and began to learn the beautiful air Bridget Cruise from that record.
After a few more tunes, I decided to try and interpret the stunning Aisling Gheal.
I have been listening to Iarla O’Lionaird sing it for decades.
Then I tried some classic tunes from Peadar O’Riada, Martin Hayes and Denis Cahill, and then Cathal Hayden.
Basically I returned in my mind to the teenage boy in Kildare in the 1970s, sitting alone in a room, playing guitar every day, with no audience.
Slowly new, original airs began to invite their way into the instrument, so I added them.
And I loved it.
I decided to commit 2020 to my friend, the Lowden classical, made for me some years ago by the legend that is George Lowden.
Every day for 90 minutes I’d just sit in the same spot and either learn or write a new tune.
As the year progressed, I found this exercise most healing, in a year when healing was needed.
By October I had about 15 pieces of music.
Brian Masterson came on board. Jon O’Connell came on board.
We were going to go to Windmill Lane.
Then the next lockdown happened, and I decided to record this music  at home, in the room where the pieces were written or learned.
Jon recorded my performances.
Jon added some gorgeous music himself, as did Adam Shapiro and Susan O’Neill.
Brian mixed and mastered in Dublin.
And here we are in February 2021, about to release my 3rd record in 12 months.
First there was Live in De Roma from a concert in Antwerp.
Then Bittersweet Crimson in July 2020.
And now, I present Out of the Blue.
My first album of instrumental tunes.
No songs.
This record will be launched on March 1st.
However, from today you can pre-order this cd from www.lukabloom.com
The cost is 20 euros including shipping.
The cd and download will be available from March 1st.
The first 200 pre-orders will be the first to be shipped and will be signed.
I’m both excited and nervous, making this announcement.
In a year of stillness, it is a shock to me that this has been completed.
Nervous, but grateful and happy.
Thank you Brian Masterson and Jon O’Connell for believing this was a worthwhile project and for guiding me through it, and bringing so much to it.
Hanne Fisker took the photo.
Myriam Riand designed the artwork.
Quotes:
Peadar O’Riada:
‘Music tends to reflect the musician playing, and moreover, the composer of the song or music. The more honest the piece, the more powerful the performance. Luka swims naked in the flow of his truthful music.
Sin é mo chara Barry duit’
Iarla O’Lionaird:
‘This recording illustrates amply Luka’s innate and deep love of music-rendered as it is with equal measures of magic and masterly execution.’
Martin Hayes:
‘Luka has achieved the most important thing when it comes to the playing of these tunes; he has captured their beauty’.
Steve Cooney:
‘I’m delighted that Luka has finally placed his immense guitar-playing skills front and centre on this new offering….A thing of magic and beauty created by a fully committed heart’.
Thank you all and offwe go………
Luka

This is Jon O’Connell and a Bogman.

Jon and I have been working away since early December, quietly recording my first instrumental album. The recording is finished.
The music has been sent to Brian Masterson in Dublin.  Brian will do what Brian always does. He will mix and master the pieces and bring it all together into this glorious thing we love to call a RECORD.   I still believe in the RECORD. Thank God Brian and Jon believe in this record.   My last record, Bittersweet Crimson was released in mid-July.  It is beyond my wildest dreams that in February 2021 I will release a new record. Can’t believe it.  It just crept up on me.

This guitar that George Lowden made for me, inspired me. Steve Cooney, Peadar O’Riada, Martin Hayes, Denis Cahill, Cathal Hayden inspired me and I began to write some pieces of my own music, just to help me get through the long, sometimes tough days.

I thought of all the people missing the ones they cannot travel to. I lost two friends whose funerals I could not attend.  There are too many people I cannot see.  Playing these old tunes, writing some pieces every single day, it brought me peace. It also reminded me of the youthful time, when I played for hours alone at home, with nobody listening.  Just happy to play my guitar. Every note, every chord had an urgency and something to say.
As 2020 went on, so did the playing. I sat in this spot in the photo every day for about 90 minutes, just playing the guitar.  I decided to record the album in this exact spot where the tunes were either learned or written.

Soon I will be leaving this house.
What a sweet farewell this will be, having these tunes to bring with me.
The wonderful Myriam Riand will create a design for this record.
I am hopeful it will be ready to ship from www.lukabloom.com by mid-February. As soon as the release date is confirmed, we will announce a pre-order for anyone interested.

The inspiration for this recording came from out of the blue.
This new record will be called Out of the Blue.
There is some great playing from Jon, Adam Shapiro and Susan O’Neill.
I don’t utter one word, or sing one note.
The guitar is doing all the singing.
Because there are no words for 2020. Except maybe this – Life is good.
Please, be safe and be well.
Thank you.

Luka