The Story So Far...
Ray, Donal and Brenda in 1980. Joanne
would be born 2 years later.
would be born 2 years later.
Donal Henry Cox was born in Newry, County Down, N.Ireland in 1980 and grew up in the nearby seaside town of Warrenpoint. The second son (and third child) of Philip and Eileen who have 4 children in all. His father Philip, whoes main instrument was also the guitar, is a talented musician himself. Philip was brought up in a traditional musical background before moving into the rock and roll scene of the 60's. As a result the house in Warrenpoint had an array of musical instruments including an accordion, fiddles, a banjo, harmonicas and, of course, guitars. Donal recalls on a few occasions being woken up at night to the sound of a musical jamming session happening in the front room, and indeed when the family would visit his father's home house you could pretty much bet on it that a 'session' would happen later that night, and carry on well into the early hours of the next day. As his father was also a working musician his working instruments would remain under lock and key in the trailer in the garage, but occasionally the Fender Strat and Peavey 2x12 combo amplifier would find its way into the front room of the house. Maybe his father needed to work on a new song or maybe the guitar just needed a new set of strings! Either way it didn't matter as this would give Donal (and his other siblings for that matter) a chance to play on the fine electric!
Donal's interest in music and in particular the guitar was further elevated when at the age of 9 he was given the chance to enroll in guitar lessons at his primary school. The Saturday after signing up for the lessons, he went with his parents to the local music shop in Warrenpoint (McSweeneys. Don't look for it, it's not there anymore!), where a 'Hondo II' acoustic guitar priced at £65 was purchased for £60 with a fresh pack of strings thrown in for free! (His first guitar, which he still owns today). The lessons ended after 9 months with the end of the school year and unfortunately when the new school term began, the guitar lessons had been scraped completely. This deflated his interest in the instrument somewhat, but a year later something happened that would change all that. An album called 'NeverMind' by 'Nirvana' found its way into the house via his older sister Brenda. Indeed a lot of music would find its way to Donal through her! This album and band opened the door to many other bands of that time (the 'Grunge' era of the early 90's), and it was this interest in that music which saw his interest in the guitar revived. At the age of 11 he dusted off the guitar books and began to teach himself guitar chords once again. His interest in 'Grunge' music opened up his musical taste buds to bands of the late 60's and 70's such as 'Thin Lizzy' and 'Jimi Hendrix', with 'About a Girl' by 'Nirvana' and 'The Rocker' By 'Thin Lizzy' being the first songs he learned on the instrument.
Returning home in April 2010, Donal once again got back into his local gigging scene and continued to write. Although the family business which he had to then look after took him away from his main goal, which was to get back into the studio and produce that ever important second album. That being said the next 15 months saw original performances in: Studio 2 @ Parr Street studios, Liverpool, performing live with Xander And The Peace Pirates, in The Cavern, Liverpool, performing a new original tune on balcony TV, Dublin, The Blues on the Bay Festival, Warrenpoint, The Fiddlers Green Festival, Rostrevor and The Tanglewood Music Festival. In June 2011 he signed with Front Shore Records, an independant label who have since been helping to open doors for him in the right directions, and put his music into the right places and hands. Donal is currently in his home recording studio (The Loftden) working on first cuts for the second album.