HOW IT ALL BEGAN
ish performer, composer and deft songwriter Tom Portman plays resophonic/acoustic and electric guitars. He also plays variety of other string instruments including violin, mandolin and banjo.
Over the past decade he has been both a consistent, prolific force in Irish music. With 4 solo albums to his name, there’s a wide range to his work – from the Blues, Irish melodies through bluegrass to Indian ragas. The Journey (2007), At One (2011), Float Your Blues Away (2013)and his latest multi instrumental release White Crow (2015).
With a musicianship appreciated by many artists, he’s supported the likes of Eric Bibb and Preston Reed. He has performed alongside a long list of musical greats from Brother Dege, Roesy,Charis, Peader King, John Conneely, Magda Piscorczyk (PL) to John Smith (UK). A long list of album collaborations offers a testament to his versatility.
Tom’s music is gaining renown both in Ireland and abroad. The last years saw him tour extensively across Europe and as far away as India with a plethora of actsin tandem with his own captivating one-man shows.This includes playing Dobro and Lapsteel on European tours for Louisiana slide player Dege Legg who’s music featured in Tarranino’sfilm ‘Django Unchained’
“If it has strings, Portman can play them. Not only play them but bend them, scratch them, shape ’em and mould them into a collage of beauty…’ ‘a melting pot of Americana, Irish trad, world and the magical.
CARL CORCORAN Presenter, RTE, Blue of the Night
‘A softly spoken singer songwriter who can sing the blues with the best …his guitar was an extension of himself. ..a spirit of true Irish blues throughout his work… Adrian Lavelle, Spirit of Voice
‘Sounds great; very interesting chord lines and use of space’. Guitarist, Dennis Cahil
‘Fascinating…he absolutely captivated me’ John Richards, Galway Bay FM
All 4 of Tom’s solo albums; The Journey (2007), At One (2011), Float Your Blues Away (2013) and his latest release, White Crow (2015) are self-released and available for download through this website or in album form at concerts.
In addition Portman teaches instrumental classes in Galway through the GTI and ‘Maoin Ceol’ School of Music and has given Dobro and Guitar workshops in the Belfast Metropolitan College, Galway Access Music Project and at the Krakow Blues Festival.