23 September 2023
By Bryan McCarthy
Tom Keating Presents
& Special Guests
Guinness Cork Jazz
Cork Opera House
Sunday 29th October
Tom Keating Presents is thrilled to announce Dublin quartet The Scratch who are set to perform at this year’s Guinness Cork Jazz in Cork Opera House on October 29, 2023.
The Scratch are a four-piece band that sound like no one else you’ve ever heard before, featuring Conor Dockery (guitar, backing vocals), Cathal McKenna (bass/backing vocals), Daniel Lang (cajón, percussion, lead vocals), and Jordan O’Leary (guitar, lead vocals). Like all the great progressive musicians, they turn music on its head and pour their hearts and souls into their art to forge something original and new.
Musicians making the time-honoured leap from acoustic to electric are well-documented, but The Scratch did it the other way round. Bob Dylan famously received a hostile reaction when he went electric in 1965. When The Scratch went acoustic, they ushered in a new and exciting creative chapter. What’s more, they signed to Sony Music Ireland and are on the same roster as Bob Dylan!
Prior to The Scratch, they were a “a full-blown metal band” called Red Enemy, who released an album and toured the UK and US. After Red Enemy fizzled out, four of its five members re-convened. “We started looking at ways to express ourselves a bit more authentically,” Conor Dockery says. “Something we could put our individual personalities into.”
They swapped the electric axes and amps for acoustics. The fledgling band found their feet jamming in their kitchen, creating freewheeling, intrepid music, which is laced with humour, honesty, devilment, and an overwhelmingly positive spirit, refreshingly free from the constraints of a recording studio or rehearsal room. The band then pursued a musical journey incorporating hard-rock and metal dynamics with adventurous acoustic-based music, while additionally using a cajón, a box-shaped drum that originated in Peru.
The Scratch when on to put out a self-released album, Couldn’t Give a Rats. So far, so good. Only problem was its timing, emerging in early April, 2020, literally a few short weeks after the world shut down. Towards the end of the pandemic, the band felt an overwhelming compulsion to give it their best shot as full-time musicians, channelling all the frustration and disappointment of the previous two years in the most positive and proactive way they could. They were invited to appear at James Vincent McMorrow’s Imagining Ireland event at the Barbican, London in May 2022. McMorrow would prove to be a key ally, producing their forthcoming album, Mind Yourself, at Black Mountain Studios.
In early 2023, The Scratch signed to Sony Music Ireland. The first fruits of this partnership can now be heard on Trom II- A Slip in the Wind, a remarkable tune that beautifully showcases their singular sound. Mind Yourself is out on November 3. For The Scratch, life is only just beginning.
October 27 – The Charlatans – Cork City Hall
Tickets €45 (standing)/ €50 (seated) + booking fee available from Ticketmaster.ie
October 28 – Tony Hadley – Cork City Hall – 7PM
Tickets €45 (standing) / €55 (seated) + booking fee available from Ticketmaster.ie
October 28 – Jenny Greene – Cork City Hall – 11:30PM
Tickets €29.50 including booking fee available from Ticketmaster.ie
October 29 – Mack Fleetwood – Cork City Hall – 7PM
Tickets €32.50 (standing)/€35.50 (seated) available from Ticketmaster.ie
October 29 – The Scratch – Cork Opera House – 11:30PM
Tickets €26.50 + b/fee available from Box Office and Ticketmaster.ie
Over 18s – Id required