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All the best: Flash Harry Hamilton on his favourite things

By Kerry McKittrick

The 49-year-old lives in Lurgan with his wife Heather and their daughters Brooke (18), Lucy (17) and Tianna (13). He is part of Queen tribute band Flash Harry and will be appearing in the Great American Songbook with the Birdland Big Band next month.

My best moment

Notwithstanding weddings and children being born, it was seeing Bruce Springsteen at Slane in 1985. It was the first large festival I was at, with glorious sunshine and my friends and I camped over the weekend. We decided to go on the spur of the moment and we had a ball. It was one of those weekends that stands out in your memory.

My best song

It’s In Dreams by Roy Orbison. From one point of view it is a wonderful song to sing and rises over two octaves. But it also has a great story and is just so well-written. Orbison apparently dreamt that Elvis had a hit with it but when he woke up he realised that the song had never been written and so he hastily jotted down the score and lyrics. It’s a great song to perform.

My best way to relax

Just sitting and listening to music. I tend to put the headphones on when I’m doing something else so I can just get lost in it. I used to go to bed and the last thing I would do at night was listen to music. At the moment everyone in the house has a throat infection and I’m very nervous about getting one so I’m sleeping in the spare room and getting to listen to music before I go to sleep again.

My best job

That’s the one I’m doing now, working with companies to help them export into Europe. I visit them to see what their products are and help them identify markets in Europe. I’ve done sales and business development before but this is very rewarding.

My best advice

It came from a teacher at my last year at school who told me that things are achieved by persistence. The cleverest people in the world will tell you that you need to stick at something to get results.

My best gift

Well, there’s certainly the gift my wife gave me of our three wonderful children. There was also my first guitar, which was a present that my parents gave me for Christmas when I was about 14. To have your own guitar back then was a brilliant thing.

My best achievement

That was playing the Royal Albert Hall in 2004. It was something I always wanted to do and I put the deal together myself. We had 2,000 people there and we had a great night —  when you stand on that stage and think of the names of the people who have stood there before you, it’s incredible. It was a bit of a gamble but it was absolutely worth it.

My best buy

The first album I ever bought was Queen’s Sheer Heart Attack. It was their third album but it was the beginning of a lifelong love of the band.

My best film

I have two favourites for over the Christmas period. I do like The Godfather Part II, but the best one is It’s A Wonderful Life (right), starring Jimmy Stewart, which is about the ripple effect of how we impact on people.

My best book

I read Animal Farm by George Orwell in school not long after I learned about the Russian Revolution and it really  taught me about how  power corrupts. I do read a lot but it’s mostly biographies rather than fiction. 

  • The Great American Songbook will be at the Waterfront Hall, Belfast, on January 9 and in Ranfurly House, Dungannon, on January 10. For tickets and information go to www.waterfront.co.uk or for Ranfurly, tel: 028 8772 8600

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