Brendan Bowyer is a native of Waterford City, Ireland. He first came into prominence in Ireland in 1959 as the “lead” singer for the famous “Royal Showband” from Waterford.
His recordings with “The Royal” included six “#1 hits,” a figure still unsurpassed in Ireland. The most successful being: “The Hucklebuck,” which went platinum internationally. Other accolades with The Royal Showband at that time included: “Top Modern Dance Band” in Great Britain (1961). On this memorable tour, one of the “Support Groups” opening for the Royal was “The Beatles.” The Royal received “The Carl-Alan Award”; the “Oscar” of British Dance music at that time.
The Royal Showband were to become Ireland’s most popular (ever) Showband. It was in 1961 they were voted no. 1 Modern Dance Band in Great Britain. They continued to make history when they made the movie: “The One Nighters, which received a Special Award at the Cork Film Festival in 1963. Also during this period, The Royal Showband had eight number 1 records, of which six were recorded by Brendan. Tom Dunphy and Charlie Mathews contributed the others.
Brendan combined his ethnic roots with the best of Popular music. Doing so, by putting emphasis on providing an entertaining stage show, which was to make “the Royal Showband” a legend in Las Vegas as the Irish Showband. One of the treasured memories of this time was when “The King” himself, Elvis Presley, (Brendan’s longtime idol) came to see him perform. Elvis was so impressed with Brendan’s performance of “You Gave Me a Mountain”, that he later recorded it himself and included it in his own program and also featured it on his Worldwide Special: “Aloha From Hawaii”. There were to be twenty-five years of residencies in Las Vegas strip hotels.
He combined performing in Las Vegas with sellout Summer Seasons at Clontarf Castle in Dublin. This kept Brendan at the top of his profession in Ireland, and kept his now legendary status to the fore.
Brendan returned to the recording studio, a part of his career he ruefully admits neglecting. “The Best Of Brendan Bowyer” was released. It was a collection of his early hits, including “Hucklebuck”. Next album, “Going Home,” was a collection of old and new. This showed his versatility at its height. “Brendan Bowyer’s Ireland” was a compilation of his favorite Irish ballads, with some classic melodies he is renowned for on stage.
THE NEW CENTURY
His Renaissance came about in October of 2001, when he released, with Universal Records, the album “Follow On”- dedicated to Irish Singer/Songwriters. With this CD, he featured songs from such famous Irish artists as: Bono, Van Morrison, Bob Geldof, Phil Lynott, Paul Brady, Shane McGowan, and even Phil Coulter: A fitting tribute to Irish singer/ songwriters.
This resulted in Brendan’s return to the best-selling Charts for over six months, and resultant successful tours of Ireland/UK and Australia. Included here, was a famous concert at Vicars St. Theatre, in Dublin- where Brendan, Van Morrison, and Paul Brady spontaneously “ad-libbed” the night away. This performance will soon be available on CD by Paul Brady’s record label.
Currently on release is, “On Higher Ground”; an album of spirituality, hope, and inspiration – which features among his many lauded concert songs, “The Holy City.” Now with five albums on release, Brendan’s position as one of Ireland’s leading recording artists is secure and there is more to come.
The following are some of Brendan’s most notable TV and Concert Appearances:
*The Late Show with Pat Kenny and Gay Byrne (Eleven appearances)-RTE, Dublin
*Multi-appearances on many Variety, Comedy, and Popular Music shows-RTE
*Gloria Honeycutt Show- BBC, Belfast
*Gerry Kelly Show (multiple appearances)- UTV, Belfast
*Multi-appearances on variety shows
SIGNIFICANT STAGE PERFORMANCES
NEW YORK CITY
*Carnegie Hall (three performances), including his own Show in Oct‘66
*Headlined at Albert Hall
*Invited to perform at Victoria Palace, “The Royal Variety Show”
*Liverpool Empire Theatre (this is the venue that The Beatles historically opened playing “support” to them on April 14, 1962)
MOST RECENTLY IN IRELAND
*Waterfront (Belfast), Rialto (Derry), Millennium (Derry), The Gaeity Theatre (Dublin), Olympia Theatre (Dublin), The Opera House (Cork), The Concert Hall
AUSTRALIA (with daughter, Aisling)
*Sydney Town Hall ( Sydney), The Domain, (outdoor Sydney)
*TV- “Good Morning Australia”, and “The Denise Drysdale Show”
Along with these prestigious venues, many more in Melbourne, Brisbane, and on the Gold Coast.
Aisling, daughter of renowned Irish entertainer Brendan Bowyer, was born in Galway, Ireland. Her father’s legacy and his family’s musical background inspired Aisling to take up her own professional singing career. Her father had a string of “Top of the Pop” hits back in the Sixties. He was reared on Elvis and was most certainly a “Rock ‘n’ Roll” kid. Today, the Irish people would fondly recognize him as “the Elvis of Ireland”. Most recently, Brendan finished an album w/ Universal records, “Follow On”. It is a salute to Irish composers and artists- recorded and performed w/ VanMorrison’s band in Belfast, Ireland. Aisling is featured singing a duet w/ her father on this album, “ Fairytale of New York”. Brendan’s (Aisling’s grandfather) father was a renowned musical professor in Ireland. His wife (her grandmother) was a professional classical singer. Both her great grandparents were lead classical singers in musicals and operas with the most prestigious touring opera companies in Europe. Brendan’s two sisters are also classical singers in Ireland today. Aisling’s younger sister, Clodagh, is a professional actress residing in New York City. She is currently performing in the Off-Broadway show “Playboy Of The Western World.”
In 1991, Aisling received sponsorship to compete in The World Music Festival in San Diego, California where she took the first place honor. After returning to Ireland, during the summer of 1992, she was asked to be the opening act for her father in Dublin’s esteemed Clontarf Castle. This launched a six-year stint performing on stage with her father and his Royal Show band, where she toured extensively throughout the States, Europe, and Australia. To this day, Aisling appreciates any and every opportunity to perform with her father.
In 1998, Aisling performed in various cabaret acts and numerous supper clubs throughout the city of Las Vegas, where she now resides. At one of these events, she was discovered by Twenty First Century Productions, and asked to perform in one of their production show “Diamonds and Pearls”. She later headlined the show billed as “The Voice.” Later, Aisling performed to a sold out crowd at Las Vegas’ Summerlin Theatre of Performing Arts, directed by Aine Mullin. In this concert, she was also billed as “The Voice.”
Later, Aisling returned from Australia, where she and her father toured. It was a huge success. The tour was called “Bowyer’s Live!”
Last May, Aisling completed a year’s contract as the “star” performer with Dick Foster Productions, in the show “Whisper.” She was “top of the Bill” as the featured singer/host. To her credit, this show achieved “Show of the Year.” During this show’s run, she was honored with the opportunity to sing the American National Anthem for the torch lighting (Nevada) at the 2002 Winter Olympics- also, she sings the Star Spangled Banner for most of the boxing events in Nevada. Most recently, she completed a tour with Ireland’s longest running cabaret, Jury’s Cabaret, direct from Ireland.
Along with the production show aspect of the music business, she is determined to return to her roots once again singing Irish music- her love. She has been performing in various theatres and cabaret rooms throughout the States. Aisling is delighted to announce the completion of her new album, Offering, with which she covers a wide variety songs- mostly Irish.
The name “Aisling”: It is an Irish Gaelic name pronounced Ash-ling. It means “a vision” in the Irish Gaelic language. Back in Ireland around the year 1916 during the uprising and rebellions, the word “Aisling” was used as a code word- for the Irish to refer to Ireland. More specifically, “a vision of a free Ireland”. The Irish called Ireland “the black-haired Aisling”. Of course, her parents may not have known of the historic nature of the name when naming her, but fell in love with its’ direct translation, “our vision”.