Robbie O'Connell is a singer and songwriter of international renown. In a career spanning almost 50 years, his songs have captured the essence of Irish traditional music while keeping a sharp focus on current events and contemporary social issues. O'Connell's storytelling, warm personality, and hilarious sense of humor make his live performances unique, and an experience fondly remembered long after the applause has faded.

In this relaxed, informal exploration of his life in music, I use my close friendship with the singer to focus on his early influences, emigration to the US, and development as a songwriter and collaborator. His work with The Clancy Brothers—who were his uncles—and Mick Moloney, Jimmy Keane, Donal Clancy, Aoife Clancy, James Keane, and many others has left a profoundly resonant and influential set of recordings.

O'Connell recently returned to Ireland with his wife, Roxanne. They live, as he says, in bucolic splendor, "like the lotus-eaters" in the picturesque village of Clashmore in Co. Waterford, the same County he was born in before moving to Carrick on Suir in Tipperary, where he grew up.