Luka Bloom - List Survey 2002
Introduction: First Song - First Album - First Gig

Contributions to the LukaList Survey 2002.
LukaList Archive: January 2002 and February 2002

A friend of mine invited me to a rockfestival in Tienen, with Luka as final act and just before him Arno, a Belgian blues-singer I absolutely love... so actually I have to admit, she went to see Luka Bloom, but I was there for Arno... My friend played a tape in the car on the way there and the only song I knew from Luka at that time was 'rescue mission' (shame on me....)... Arno was very good and then Luka came on stage... I don't think I blinked until he had finished...I remember being totally overwhelmed by 'Don't be so hard on yourself' AND by the singalong with Sunny Sailor Boy.... I was absolutely OUTRAGED that record stores weren't open on Sundays (the festival was on Saturday evening), so on Monday I went and bought (if I remember it correctly) Salty Heaven and Riverside.... a few days later I bought Turf and The Acoustic Motorbike... and about a week later I was on this list....
A local theatre group used "Dreams in America" in one of their shows (mit flags and torches and flames, very special), somewhere in the early 90's. Then a few years later, I heard "I need love" and I was hooked.
Only discovered Luka by reading a booklet outlining future events and performers at this superb theatre and gallery in Manchester. This Bloom fellow was apparantly the brother of Christy Moore and I had seen him a couple of times.......surely his brother couldn't be half bad, so i went along. and so the spell began, the rest is history and has changed many things in my life.....new friends, new faces , new places and good reasons to pop over the water whenever I can....that is if I can find out when the man is playing !!!!! Been over since to Clonakilty, The Point Dublin, Wexford and Dundalk. Off to Amsterdam next for another rainbow day.
One of my sisters and I went to see the Pogues in Chicago in 1988. We had no idea who was opening and then this man walked on stage with an acoustic guitar. He started playing and proceeded to blow everyone away. I was transfixed and, though I had a great time watching the Pogues, I left that night thinking of Luka. He had no albums out under the name Luka Bloom yet. My sister and I tried to get more info on him but this was before the WWW and info was scarced. Then a year or so later I was driving in my car, listening to WXRT and I heard Delirious and I slammed on the breaks and made a bee-line for the record store.
I have been a Luka fan since the late 1980s. I was Lucky enough to see him perform with the Pogues. It was my first and only live Luka experience and I am longing for the experience again. He was performing songs from Riverside during this show and he also filled in for the Pogues lead guitarist during their set. It was a magical night.
I know Luka's music since he released Riverside in 1990. I almost waited 10 years to see him live. This is one of the biggest mistakes in my life so far :-)
the album: The Acoustic Motorbike
First Luka-experience: at the end of 1990, on Radio 3 NL, a show that still exists, it's called "2 Meter Sessies" you people in NL are so lucky to have many good music- programmes on the radio!!); he performed "I need love" "unplugged", I was lucky that I had my tape ready... next day I bought "Riverside"...
the song: I Need Love
Sitting in my car parked in Bondi Junction, Sydney hearing interview with himself on ABC radio and then "Diamond Mountain" broadcast over the airwaves... hooked ever since. Naturally, Turf was first CD bought.
Through the wonderful Hothouse Flowers and TripleJ radio. I bought Luka's "Riverside" CD when it was first released and have followed his music since that time. I have managed to convert some friends along the way too...
I have a very good friend that played guitar and sung every thursday night at Tavern in Norwell, Massachusetts. I hadn't been there in 3 months and hadn't talked to her in that time either...One Thursday I strolled in and when she finished the song she was playing she said from the stage: "tony, you're gonna love this next song, and she proceeded to play "Mary Watches Everything", I bought Acoustic Motorbike the next day (had just been released) and I've been in love with Luka's music ever since.
Ciara, early version on Celtic Christmas, November 1995. Just kept pushing the repeat button until my brain yelled when is this going to stop!!!
A friend came to me and told me he had heard a song on the radio. Some program about new releases. My friend said that he thought that it might be my stile. It was, 100%.
The song Acoustic Motorbike, on a HEAR Music sampler-CD, maybe '92? (I was intrigued) album: Riverside (I was HOOKED)
Irishman in Chinatown / Riverside / from the NY Public Library @ Lincoln Center
The first gig was my introduction to him at Roseland in New York City as an opening act for "The Pogues" in 1988, can't remember what month, shame on me. My 17 year old sister and I had gone to the concert with no idea who the opening act was, and luckily had planned to be there early, expecting that there would be a crush of people up front and wanting to get a prime spot in good dancing range of the stage. Oh the days when being in the mosh pit was desirable, now I stay as far away as possible!
There weren't that many people there yet, but there was a cluster of people right in front of the stage, eagerly anticipating the opening act, one Luka Bloom. From the first chords, which were of a song called "The 100,000" which I hope that someday he'll record, a wonderful story song about undocumented Irish living in America, I was completely hooked, and by the time he reached "Gone to Pablo" and finished up with "Delirious", I was frantically running around asking people if they were aware of him and where one could see him again. Luckily at the end of his set he said that he'd be at The Red Lion the next night, and the rest, as they say, is history!
"This is for Life", Riverside, where: CD played via loud speaker on the football pitch at a welcome back to school bbq at my son's school!
On triple J late at night the song was I need love and I was captivated
I was in Ireland at the end of 1991 visiting some Irish cousins, I mentioned I had seen Christy Moore in two concerts in London, and they asked whether I had heard of Luka Bloom. They played me some of the TV series "Bringing It All Back Home" and I was hooked. When I got back to London just before I returned to Melbourne, I bought the Luka Bloom and Riverside tapes. It wasn't until several years after that I realised I shouldn't have been able to buy the Luka Bloom self titled album, but I'm very glad I did.
I moved to Melbourne at the beginning of 2001 and as a country lass I had never stepped into an Irish pub until I noticed that there was one about a block from my new home. Stumbled in there one evening to hear an irish fellow singing a song called "You couldn't have come...." apparently by a fellow called Luka Bloom. Needless to say the next time i went into a cd store i let my curiousity get the better of me, bought Riverside, and have never looked back!
A friend gave me Turf years' ago, but it took a live performance to win me over completely.
I can however tell you about my introduction to Luka's music. It must have been in 1992/3, I don't know exactly. My boyfriend (at the time, now my husband) went to a concert by Luka in Simplon, Groningen. Together with two of his best friends. (Silly me, I didn't go along; thougt it would be a 'boy's night out') He came home very excited and his friends gave him a cassette with the albums Riverside and Acoustic Motorbike. Fantastic. I have been listening to the tapes a lot over the years (changed them for cd's) but for some reason I really do not understand now, I never bought any cd's after that. On a few occasions I even came close to visiting a concert, but every time this didn't happen because of being abroad or whatever. Last year in March I finally saw Luka live in De Oosterpoort in Groningen and was completely blown away. Diamond Mountain brought me to tears. (We tried to climb Diamond Hill in summer 2000 but got caught in the clouds. It was a magical place). I was in deep awe as he performed Black is the Colour/Te Adoro. After the concert I have bought every cd I had missed over the years, and this fall added KOTF and BTMATM. Now I am still after TBMY.
I was introduced to Luka by my son (Scott) who saw a few times in NYC. I didn't really pay much attention to his music, other than liking to hear it in the background when my son was home UNTIL....the day my husband (Mike) was buried. Mike died very suddenly from the flu and it was a horrible time. After the funeral, Scott and I returned home to an empty and quiet house, worn out from the week. We laid down to capture a moment of rest and reflection and Luka's Turf album was playing. Just as I laid my head down and closed my eyes, I heard the words... "Hold my hand a little longer, Take one last look out over the fields.." The tears rolled down my cheeks, then he sang, "I will be here when you need me, I will be here in the pouring rain." From that moment forward, Diamond Mountain and Luka Bloom were a part of my life. I can still hardly listen to Diamond Mountain, but I still love it. On a happier note, I love all of Luka's music and am awaiting the day I can hear him live. He has an awesome mellow voice that resonates reassurance.
Someone lent me the Acoustic Motorbike in 1991, I copied it on a cassette but the deck worked a bit too fast, so I got used to listening to the 'slowed down' version of Motorbike. A laidback Luka if you like. When buying the cds, I had to get used to his new tempoes.
Bought the Bringing it all back Home soundtrack for the Elvis Costello song - bought Riverside the next day after hearing You Couldn't have Come....
First heard Luka on WFUV (90.7 fm), song was "Irishman in Chinatown". (I know, a song that's clearly near and dear to Luka! NOT..lol)...I just remember my friend calling one day and saying 'it's the whooping guy on FUV...' (-;< and I caught a great interview between Luka and Kathleen Gibbons. That interview and Luka live in NYC was my only fix until Riverside finally came out with Warner.
4.30 am one Sunday morning in 1992 after a big night out my partner turned on MTV (which is also defunct here!). I walked past the room and was stopped in my tracks by this hypnotising voice emanating from the room. I came in and sat down about a foot from the TV and was totally entranced by Luka's "I Need Love". I was done in, could not get it out of my mind. Phoned my music officianado brother first thing to tell him of my great find and he said "I know him," I've got his album Riverside, he did that song "Delirious" which I then remembered I had loved at the time but obviously never chased up. Well, I've caught up now!!
1st gig: 1990, Boulder Colorado. Small crowd, great performance, sound WAY too loud--it actually hurt! But we stuck it out and was worth it!
Opening for the Pogues right here in Birmingham, Alabama in 1988 (as far as I know, the last time he was in Alabama). When we arrived for the show, some of us looked at our tix and thought something like "what is a 'Luka Bloom'?" When he came out on stage with just two guitars, we weren't too impressed- but then he started playing. Need I say more?

Next I heard form him was some months later, sitting about at the radio station where I worked- I saw an ad in Variety, congratulating him on his new record deal. I had to wait many more months to get my hands on Riverside. It was well worth that wait, needless to say.
Heard Luka on our ABC Radio station October 1998 "Blackberry Time" Saw Luka on TV. "Good News Week". Forgot what he sang, infact I hope I got the right show. I was just too mesmerised.
In the very early 90's, when I was studying in Brugge, I heard Luka lots of times on Radio 2: the songs I remember I noticed to be made by an (until then for me) unknown talent were: An Irishman In Chinatown and Rescue Mission, later on Bert introduced me into more Luka.
I know Luka's music since my best friend told me about him in the summer of 1998. When a few days later I enterred a CD-shop they had 2 'nice-price' CDs of Luka, I bought them immediately (The Accoustic Motorbike and Riverside). I liked his music but when I bought Turf I really got fond of his music.
I Need Love on the radio. My boyfriend, who couldn't hear through Luka's brogue, said "Is he saying 'I'm meat loaf'?" Some guys just don't get that song.
I had heard of him through the DJ's on WRNR in 98 and then going to the Ram's Head that year and seeing him live in a small venue. I was hooked.
Heard Luka on Irish radio in 1990 (or 1991?)
Summer of '87 or '88, Luka opened for the Pogues at Boston's Orpheum Theatre. I had never heard of Luka Bloom, had no idea if Luka Bloom was male or female, an individual or a band, but he stepped onstage and with only an acoustic guitar COMPLETELY blew me away. I've been hooked ever since. After that performance, hunted high and low for ANY albums and info. About 2 years later, I heard "Rescue Mission" on Brown University's radio station, WBRU. IMMEDIATELY went to the nearest record store and bought "Riverside". (I recently replaced my scratched, overplayed, vinyl copy with the CD version.)
Doolin at the Micho Russell Music Festival in 1998
Early nineties, thanks to the Dutch radiopresentor Hubert van Hoof who introduced him in his radioshow; after that I bought Riverside inmediately
I've never seen Luka live.......maybe one day. First heard him 11years ago after buying Bringing it All Back Home whilst on my honeymoon in Ireland. I was immediately hooked. One of my wedding presents was being taken to one of Christy's concerts (Reading, England) but it took me a while to catch on that Luka is Christy's brother!
Introduced to his music through parents and fellow session musos Melbourne Aus in 1990
Must have been eight or nine years ago. I was looking through some CD's from a friend and listened to some songs from The Acoustic Motorbike. I liked it but forgot about it and a couple of months later I saw Luka in Essen, Belgium (Ambiorex Festival). I was really impressed and went out the next day to buy Turf and step by step all the other CD's.
White Horse, Dublin 1991
First song heard - I Need Love was the first song I heard by Luka as I saw it as a film clip when it reached Number 1 in Australia (I think it reached number I as my memory is foggy)
I bought TURF at the first Sydney gig which I got signed at the first Melbourne Concert Hall gig when Trish got me and my friends Feb & Daniel into the Green Room. We ran out starstruck after meeting him but Trish was far cooler and stayed.
The student aids-benefit in Leuven, jan 1997, Karl took me along. I heard something about a 'luka bloom' and thought she was a girl singer. My brother made fun of me. The concert was great, hearing Gabriel and so many other songs fresh from the singer. It was love on first sight. I won't tell with whom
Listen to the River and Ciara on the Celtic Christmas CDs-I then rushed out and bought Turf followed by Acoustic Motorbike and then Riverside.
I met an Irish fellow who was acquainted with Luka personally and gave me the Turf CD.
Luka First Moment: Breaking up with girl friend, Losing job - redundancy, Losing flat -non payment of rent, MEGA: Depress - Christy Moore not playing live, Checked out the lyrics on "Acoustic Motorbike", and thought, I've done that, I've done this too, Let's see what have you got to say about it "...As I Cycled into Kerry..." Then I got balanced again. Sheer Magic. He works...
I've been a luka fan for about 7 years. I've seen him 3-4 times in nyc at the bowery ballroom.
My ex-boyfriend had Riverside, and I loved it. I bought him TAM later.
A friend of mine played 'The One' for me (he was a big Pogues fan, which brought him to that song) and I was completely blown away. We went to see him in Paradiso ('93? '94?). Absolutely hooked ever since.
Was in the car with 3 friends, the driver wanted silence for listening to Luka Bloom. No one else had heard of him before. And then - Sunny Sailor Boy... my favourite, ever been and ever will be. Some time later I wanted to listen to the whole album and copy it to cassette. So I asked my friend who introduced Luka to me, if he can lend me the CD. Full of scatches and dust - my CD player did not like it at all... So I bought my first Luka-CD: Turf And the gig - well that was in Hamburg / Grünspan on a cold November evening. I gave the ticket as a birthday present to my best friend and we had a wonderful time. Since that day we went to every concert in Hamburg.
I have been fans of Luka for approx 8 years after hearing him on SBS TV and the radio.
I was visiting a friend who was in grad school at UCLA and Luka was highly recommended to me. I flew in the day the riots broke out so it must have been 1992 or 93. Having survived martial law, I picked up a used copy of Riverside when I got home and was hooked.
First Gig: I'm not sure as my memory is failing me and ticket stubs are in storage, but I think it was in 1990 at McCabe's Guitar Shop in Santa Monica, California.
I heard 'Rescue Mission' and 'Delirious' upon Riverside's release on an Irish Music folk show (can't remember the show or the source)...bought Riverside the next day.

First gig: the initial Fleadh which also was one of my favorites...it was a special night/weekend that I'll always remember....besides finally seeing Luka...I also finally saw Christy...and heard the Saw Doctors for the first time...it was a special time for hundreds of reasons..met sooooo many cool people and heard more great music in a weekend than I believe I had to that point in my life...it was an incredible experience capped by Luka in the second stage tent....absolutely unforgettable.

The song The Man Is Alive on a compilation album.
My brother heard Luka on National Public Radio and mentioned him to me (1994). That weekend Luka played some songs at a local book store and I have been hooked ever since.
Been listening to Luka since 1990/91 but still waiting to see the man live!
Sitting in O'Leary's Pub in Boston and hearing I Need Love. My friend behind the bar was shocked that I'd never heard him before and promptly put Riverside in the CD player.
My introduction came from a close friend in County Laois, recommending "Turf" as it was his favourite. However, I first purchased "Salty Heaven" since it was his latest release... "Shape of Love to Come" is the first song that wove its magic about my very heart and soul, drawing me in and I have been hooked ever since...and immediately ordered all the other CDs I could find.
This is one of the most difficult surveys I have done. Just as I answer it, I remember "Ciara" and "Sunny Sailor Boy" and so many others. I guess the general thought is that in a world of CDs where I like 3 or 4 songs... Luka's music touches me in a profound way and I want to hear every word, every note, every nuance to his music. I will admit that when I get to hear Christy Moore play bodhran with a Luka song it is just a bit of icing on the cake. :)
Was a fan of Barry Moore too. When he returned from the States as Luka, saw him in Cork at De Lacy House - everyone wanted to know where the other guitarist was.

List Survey Contents - Favourite Songs - First Gig, Favourite Gig & Venue

Introduction: First Song / Album / Gig - Highlights & Disappointments


© Rena Bergholz - Luka Bloom Page