“We were a blues band really. Although we played it at a thousand miles an hour, it was recognizable as blues – at least to us it was; probably it wasn’t to anybody else.” Lemmy couldn’t have been more right and more wrong at the same time when he reflected on the early Motörhead years in his autobiography. Mr. Kilmister does have fans and admirers in the blues scene; he always had.
Irish blues machine Eamonn McCormack loves Lemmy for both the sharp singing, straight speaking kind of guy he was and the radical new ways he and Motörhead have paved for future blues rock. McCormack, who toured, played and recorded with legends extensively throughout his life, now underlines this once and for all with his own salute Hats off to Lemmy. The new video single gives testament to a big motörheart beating in this chest of blues.
“December is around the corner,” McCormack explains, “the month God gave us Lemmy and – sadly – the month he took him from us. And isn’t it also the month that makes us look inward more, thinking of friends and family, and of the people who will never get to know how thankful we are for what they did? Lemmy was and will remain the most authentic hard rocker of all time. The man revolutionized blues, rock and metal – all while living this persona 24/7, no act. No way I’d ever leave without setting this record straight first: He was the man, a blueser and a rocker. Salute from the blues side of things!”
The single will be released on December 9th on all plattforms and is available now as a music video on YouTube.
Consequently, the video is a fun, tongue-in-cheek love letter to Lemmy and to the Motörhead touch on blues, playing with references while pushing the boundaries of blues rock towards an uplifting, heavily impelling sound in the spirit of and as a tribute to Motörhead’s high-energy signature. Fun fact for fans: The Irish six-string maniac recorded Hats off to Lemmy blasting his guitar through an old Marshall 4×12 – which had already been hauled by former Motörhead guitarist Brian “Robbo” Robertson for a full tour with Eamonn.
About Eamonn McCormack
Eamonn McCormack was born in the center of Dublin, the capital city of Ireland, and raised in a North side suburb. He started out on the acoustic guitar at six years of age. Prompted by the acoustic performance of his school classmate Gerry Leonard (David Bowie, Suzanne Vega), his earliest influences included Slade, Cat Stevens, Neil Young and Rory Gallagher. By twelve he was singing along with his guitar and performing at church folk masses.
Soon, finding the church music somewhat restricting, the young teenager acquired his first electric guitar (a Guild Starfire), progressed to lead guitar and joined a local garage cover band prior to playing his first paid gig. By now influences extended to Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Thin Lizzy and Dutch group Focus. At sixteen, Eamonn performed live on a national Irish radio show. Around this time he also won a major high school competition, performing his own material.
After a short stint playing in various bands throughout Ireland, Eamonn headed off to the USA where he performed extensively. He joined a band in California that was an offshoot from Canned Heat – and JJ Cale once showed up to jam with them. There he broadened his musical horizons, gained vital stage experience and absorbed fresh American music and cultural influences. All this blended together nicely with his strong Irish heritage.
Returning to Ireland after four years traveling and performing in the States, Eamonn’s unique style and sound already began to show, setting him apart from the usual blues rock at that time. He consequently solidified this signature by putting it to the test in an extensive streak of live performances under the stage name Samuel Eddy, establishing himself across Europe. Samuel Eddy and his band were rewarded for their efforts as they garnered the reputation of major European music festival favorites.
Eamonn aka Samuel Eddy signed with Universe Productions/Virgin Records and later SPV Records worldwide. Three critically acclaimed studio albums, which all sold phenomenally well, confirmed that an exciting young up-and-coming world class guitarist was emerging out of Ireland.
The following two decades saw a young Eamonn play, tour, and record with many of his earliest guitar influences, such as Rory Gallagher, Johnny Winter, Jan Akkerman (ex. Focus), Pat Travers, George Thorogood & The Destroyers, Walter Trout, Brian “Robbo” Robertson (Thin Lizzy, Motöread) and Nils Lofgren. Another highlight of this period was Eamonn and his band’s unforgettable performance at the Parkpop Festival in the Netherlands to an audience of around half a million people, sharing the bill with Robert Plant and more. Eamonn also got to play the prestigious WDR Rockpalast in Germany on the bill with Lynyrd Skynyrd & The Band, which was televised and broadcasted right across Europe.
On his own label, Eamonn decided to release a best of type of album, mainly consisting of remastered Samuel Eddy tracks and eight newer unreleased songs engineered in Dublin by Paul Thomas (U2, Phil Lynott), before finishing a great year successfully with a blinding show opening for the legendary ZZ Top in Amsterdam. At this time he also decided to drop his old stage name and revert to his real name Eamonn McCormack. His best of album Kindred Spirits, featuring older tracks with special guests Rory Gallagher, Jan Akkerman, Herman Brood and Keith Donald, garnered great recognition.
Following the success of Kindred Spirits, Eamonn decided to take a break from the road, travel the world, write some new material and jam with various artists in the US, Mexico and Hong Kong before returning to the studio – this time in Germany – to record his fifth album Heal My Faith for In-Akustik. The album was very well-received and put him firmly back on the road as a full-time recording/touring artist.
Eamonn followed up with a double album recorded and produced in the UK by Grammy-nominated producer Chris Tsangarides (Black Sabbath, Thin Lizzy). His band now consisted of Jonathan Noyce (Jethro Tull, Gary Moore) on bass and Darrin Mooney (Gary Moore, Primal Scream) on drums. The album Like There’s No Tomorrow literally achieved five star reviews across the board: One disc full on electric and the other acoustic-based, it once again proved Eamonn’s talent as a competent acoustic writer and performer and showcased his other skills on harmonica and mandolin.
More touring and mind-blowing festival appearances followed, leading to a new management and a new label coming on board. To top it all off, Eamonn got invited to perform once more on WDR Rockpalast in Germany, this time alongside Kenny Wayne Shepherd. After this explosive show, Eamonn and his young band headed straight into the studio along with German star-producer Arne Wiegand and recorded his seventh album Storyteller with eleven versatile original tracks, featuring Edgar Karg on bass guitar and Max Jung-Poppe on drums and percussion.
Storyteller was released in Europe and the UK in May 2020, where it reached No.1 on the Blues Charts in over half a dozen countries. A later release in the United States followed in 2021 to great response.
What’s next? A self-titled new album has been recorded in June 2022: Eamonn McCormack will be released on February 3rd, 2023.