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Mary Coughlan


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County Galway, Ireland (1984 – present)

Mary Coughlan (born 5 May 1956, County Galway, Ireland) is an Irish jazz and folk singer and actress. She has received great acclamation in her native country, for her emotional and heartfelt jazzy musical renditions.

This acclaimed Irish singer’s troubled upbringing manifested itself in an erratic career path, including stints as a model and a street-sweeper.

After moving to London in the mid-70s she married and began raising a family, before terminating the union and returning to Galway with her children. She began her singing career in 1984, working with Dutch musician Erik Visser (who became her long-term collaborator).

The following year she made an acclaimed appearance on the “Late Late Show” in Dublin and recorded her first album, which showcased her powerful and bluesy jazz stylings and became an unexpected bestseller in her native Ireland. Despite her ongoing personal problems, Coughlan continued to reap praise for her recorded output on WEA Records.

Coughlan began straightening her personal life out in the mid-90s, and signed a new recording contract with Big Cat Records. The label issued an excellent live set and her US debut “After The Fall”. In June 2000 Coughlan presented a series of multimedia shows in Dublin celebrating Billie Holiday, a singer whose life story has close parallels to Coughlan’s own.

The release of her 2008 album, The House of Ill Repute, sparked reviews that suggested it was her best yet.


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  • Targetlive

    Mary Coughlin will Play late on Saturday at Bridlington's Musicport Festival, which runs from the 4th-6th of November. More info here: Musicport was established in 2000 to promote live music and music education in Whitby and the surrounding area with its primary event being Musicport World Music Festival each autumn. Over the last eight years the festival has grown year on year and has established itself as a prestigious event in the festival calendar attracting major names such as Rachid Taha, The Buena Vista Social Club presents Cachaito Lopez etc, Toumani Diabate, Levellers,Misty In Roots, Courtney Pine, Talvin Singh, Richard Hawley, Chumbawamba, Altan, Rolf Harris, Mory Kante, Osibisa, Kate & Anna McGarrigle, & Los De Abajo

    6 Sep 2011 Reply
  • Maxaxaxax


    27 Aug 2011 Reply
  • MyMusicMyDivas

    invisible to you *-* <3

    16 Mar 2011 Reply
  • ziobolli73

    Wonderful voice & songs!!!!

    19 Jun 2009 Reply
  • bigmaw

    Ooor Wee Mary is the berries as we say in Glasgow ;o) She is some chanter!!!

    10 Dec 2007 Reply

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