Karan Casey / photo courtesy of Clare Keogh

Of Ballads, Love Songs And Social Justice

Irish singer-songwriter Karan Casey is at Tsunami Books June 21

She has never let go of her Irish past — the fondness for a good yarn, singing traditional ballads and love songs — but folk singer Karan Casey has in recent years carried her love of Ireland’s music to advocate for gender equality in the Irish music industry, be it on stage or in production and promotion.

Casey helped spearhead the #FairPlé social media campaign in 2018, and the work hasn’t been easy. As she told the Hollywood Soapbox website in 2022, “We have a mountain of work to do.” Still, she noted that “things have shifted, slightly, I think. Now if you’re bringing up gender balance in a room or you’re on a board, it’s OK to do that.”

Casey plows ahead with advocacy and her music. The prolific artist who has appeared in more than 50 albums and has 11 albums in her name — Nine Apples of Gold is her latest, released in February this year — makes a stop at Tsunami Books June 21, and the stories of women will be foremost on her agenda.

Perhaps the most poignant of the songs in Nine Apples of Gold is “When The Moon Gets Tangled.”

“When the Moon gets tangled in a blackthorn tree / And her dress is trampled and she cannot break free / When the thorn in your side wounds your pride / And the Moon gets tangled, I will fly to your side.”

It’s the start of a heartfelt ballad of women’s empowerment and healing in difficult times, and it should help make for a fun singer-songwriter evening.

Irish singer-songwriter Karan Casey performs with her trio 7:30 pm Wednesday, June 21, at Tsunami Books, 2585 Willamette Street. $22.50.



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