Interview & Photos by: Carolyn Lederach

Interview & Photos by: Carolyn Lederach

The rules are simple...there's a hat, this hat is filled with many questions ranging from the personal to the off beat.  We pass the hat, and artists gets a chance to answer the question they choose from said hat.  Fun is had by all.

Dermot Kennedy might not be a household name yet, but he's certainly on that track.  Selling out headlining shows the last year, and a slew of festivals across the globe this Summer Dermot seems unstoppable.  This Irish songwriter humbly delivers a solid show every time with touching antidotes behind each of the songs.  We got a chance catch him before his sold out show on a snowy night at Underground Arts in Philadelphia.

Without further ado, here's our Chat in the Hat with Dermot Kennedy:


Chat in a Hat: Dermot Kennedy


Whats your favourite food on the road?

It’s pizza for sure.  Lombardi’s in New York is the best.


You’re granted a once in a lifetime opportunity to travel to space.  You can bring one person and one item.  Who and what would they be?

I’d probably bring my guitar and bend the rules a little bit and bring my dog.  I mean if you’re going to space you don’t really want to deal with people.


What’s your recording and writing process like?

These days recording and writing I usually write lyrics on the road by myself whenever I get a chance and the music has been really fun to be collaborative lately and it feels really good to have something good musically going in the studio and then write lyrics to that.  I used to do it before completely on my own just acoustic and writing at the same time.  But now it’s more so in the studio to build a track and then build on it.


What is your favourite 90’s show and/or 90’s album?

My favorite 90s album was one of Paul Brady’s albums.  He was an Irish songwriter my dad used to play and he was one of my favourites.  That was one of the first things I latched onto musically.


What’s the first record you ever bought?

An album called “Set List” by an Irish band called The Frames.  It was like Glen Hansard’s very first thing he did and I saw them on TV and they played a Halloween show in Dublin and it was the best thing I’d ever seen so I went out and bought the album the next day.


What’s your favourite song / album right now?

My favourite album is probably “Repave” by Volcano Choir.  I really like hearing Justin Vernon in his lower range.


If you could be an animal for a day what would you be?

I actually did a falconry recently with these hawks and we walked into the woods and the hawk is on your arm the whole time and it was just really really amazing.  So if I could be anything I’d probably be a hawk, or an eagle.


What’s your favourite thing about Philly?

I feel like everyone just says cheesesteaks?  On the last tour our Philly show was the smallest venue, it was maybe 200 people at Boot and Saddle, and we’d played bigger venues than that on the tour but the energy just wasn’t the same as it is here. 


Worst job you’ve had:

I used to work for this promotion company and we used to go to whatever event they had on and take names and try to promote their product that day.   There was one day I had to dress up as Spongebob Squarepants for the whole day and it was in a supermarket and I just had to walk around all day and hand out things.  I was knocking into everything and it was horrible.  I had a certain amount of balloons I had to get rid of that day so I’d just let a bunch of them go when I was outside bringing them in.  But I had that job, I almost walked out that day