Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 20 December 2014

Opera House is my dream gig venue says Duke Special

Duke Special appears at the Grand Opera House on November 3
Duke Special appears at the Grand Opera House on November 3

Duke Special has told how he is looking forward to playing his "dream venue" in Belfast next month as part of the Queen's Festival.

The dreadlocked singer/songwriter who hails from Belfast said he was " thrilled" to be taking to the stage at the Grand Opera House on November 3.

Duke Special, real name Peter Wilson, was at HMV in Donegall Arcade to play a live set of tracks from the re-release of his album Songs From The Deep Forest.

The re-released album includes his performance with the Ulster Orchestra at the Waterfornt Hall earlier this year as well as the latest single, Our Love Goes Deeper Than This, featuring Neil Hannon of the Divine Comedy and The Magic Numbers' Romeo Stodart.

Duke Special also revealed that he will be taking three months off at the start off next year to concentrate on writing material for his next album.

He said: "It's been a pretty good year for me with quite a few highlights. Playing with the Ulster Orchestra was amazing and it was brilliant playing on the Jools Holland show as well.

"I also had a great time at Electric Picnic. I was a bit nervous because I was playing at the same time as The Beastie Boys, but there was a really good turnout.

"Now I'm looking forward to playing the Grand Opera House on November 3. It's my dream venue to play in Belfast. My influences include everything from the Beatles and the Beach Boys, Cole Porter and Gershwin and I obviously tip my hat to Vaudeville, so the Opera House really suits my style and I'm just thrilled to get the chance to play there."

Officer workers, students and parents with young children packed into HMV to watch the Belfast singer's performance.

Dressed in a black and red military-style outfit, Duke Special entertained the crowd with five tracks, including Our Love Goes Deeper Than This, a new song called This Might be Healing, and This Could Be My Last day, on which he was accompanied on harp by Ursula Burns.

"I'm taking three months off from touring to write new material and hopefully it will be well received. As an artist I just want to learn how to write better songs and develop."

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Sagittarius:

Beware of spending beyond your means. Sticking to a budget will help you survive the festive season relatively unscathed. It will be easier than you think to let your grip on the purse strings slip especially as the big day draws near. Let Christmas be about loving, sharing and giving. Spend quality time preparing food, making decorations and playing games together. If you haven't sent all your cards or round robin emails give some thought about what you will be sharing with others this year.More