Find Your Local Music Generation

Music Generation Laois School of Rock and Pop release debut EP with Duke Special

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In July 2015, Irish singer-songwriter Duke Special visited Portlaoise and spent two inspirational days with 32 young musicians from the Music Generation Laois Summer School of Rock and Pop, developing their songwriting skills. The musicians spent eight intensive days writing and recording three new songs, enhanced by the input of four Music Generation Laois Tutors: Adela Meally, Ros O Meara, Dale Hennessy and Andreas Balke. This project was funded through the Arts Council/Music Generation Partnership.

On the evening of 6 December Duke Special re-joined the songwriters at Kavanaghs Live Music Venue, Portlaoise to launch the Music Generation Laois School of Rock and Pop EP!

On the night the young musicians performed the fantastic original songs that they wrote and recorded as part of the Summer Camp, using an eclectic range of instruments, from uilleann pipes to ukuleles.

Speaking about the experience of working on their songwriting during the project, one participant said, ‘I felt that concentrating [on songwriting] helped not only my understanding of the different methods that can be used to write a song but also my general understanding and knowledge of music, for example how to add different instruments at different points of the song, and how to use dynamics.’

Another participant spoke about Duke Special’s input, and how it brought ‘many productive ideas... [He was] great at telling stories while writing a song. He told us about his inspiration to write lyrics about any concept. He was very funny and I would love to do another writing workshop next year.’

The School of Rock and Pop EP can be purchased through the Music Generation Laois Office on +353 57 866 4176 or by emailing

The Music Generation Laois School of Rock and Pop provides tuition in guitar, drums and keyboard, and weekly Jam Sessions for young musicians and singers. For further information on this or any other Music Generation Laois initiatives, please contact:

Rosa Flannery
t: 057 8664078