Tommy Sands, Co Down's singer, songwriter and social activist has achieved something akin to legendary status in his own lifetime. He tours solo but is also part of the internationally well known musical group the Sands Family. They have been delighting audiences with their music for decades. His book 'The Songman' shares some of the stories from along the way.
With a Fenian fiddle in one ear and an Orange drum in the other, Sands was reared in the foothills of Mourne Mountains. His family was immersed in folk music – his father played fiddle, his mother accordion. Their kitchen was a place where Protestant and Catholic farmers alike would gather to sing at the end of a day’s harvesting. The Songman is the story of Sands’ remarkable journey, the turbulent days of the civil rights movement, encounters with The Bothy Band, Pete Seeger, Ian Paisley, and a ‘defining moment’ during the Good Friday Agreement talks.