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Looking Up. Jamie writes on renewing the spirit and finding inspiration in the discovery of a diary from her first trip to Ireland, finding a new view of the land of her roots.
“Hush-” they whisper, “Mary Healy is going to sing.” Jamie traces the roots of one of her signature ballads. And the history behind a treasured family heirloom.
Jamie writes about the new Hemingway film series on PBS. The writer’s legacy, and the power of masterful literature on our psychic reality.
Songs and stories of Chicago’s vibrant early 20c history — its people and neighborhoods, rich with arts, culture and feisty activists, are told, and sung about, by singer/writer Jamie O’Reilly “A Voice for the Soul of the City.”
SongNotes Blog. Jamie sings the Butcher Boy, Irish folk song. Michael Smith and Bob Weber accompany. live from the Old Town School of Folk Music 2004
Jamie’s thoughts on the one-year anniversary of the pandemic. Song for St. Patrick’s Day. And return to Ireland.
“I like the conversation.” Olive calls to me, as I turn off lights in the hall before bed during a sleepover. I spray her pillow with aromatherapy sleeping scents from Nia, which leads to talk of smells we like: rose, lavender, jasmine, sandalwood, and peppermint. Which leads to talk of fruit: berries, melons, tropical and […]
“Love is like a crown of thorns, wrapped around my heart.”
The Irish folksong performed by Jamie’s Trio.Listen to Red is the Rose here. It’s not for the parting of my sister KateIt’s not for the love of my motherIt’s all for the loss of my bonny blue-eyed ladThat I’m leavin my homeland forever Jamie sings the timeless Irish ballad, with Michael Smith on guitar.Featuring Bob […]
The nightingale’s lullaby to the Christ Child, performed in Spanish with female voices. Katrina O’Reilly-Loundy sings verse one, and plays piano. Soloist Jamie O’Reilly joins her, with a chorus of female singers, from a live 2004 O’Reilly family holiday concert. . My dear friend Wayland Rogers was my vocal coach, and landlord in the early […]
On Sept 26, 2020, Anne Hills, Jamie O’Reilly, Paul Amandes, and pianist John Erickson performed a concert, recorded at the Hinsdale Unitarian Church, honoring the musical life of their friend, the beloved singer/songwriter Michael P. Smith, who died on August 3 of this year. Produced, hosted and engineered by Rich Warren for Folkstage, a program […]
On Sept 26, 2020 Anne Hills, Jamie O’Reilly, Paul Amandes, and pianist John Erickson performed a concert, recorded at the Hinsdale Unitarian Church, honoring the musical life of their friend, the beloved singer/songwriter Michael P. Smith, who died on August 3 of this year. Produced, hosted and engineered by Rich Warren for Folkstage, a program […]
Jamie O’Reilly Song Notes Songs of a Kerry Madwoman, was a song cycle, we recorded and performed in the early 2000s. At the DePaul Humanities Center, The Chicago Humanities Center, and at Prop Theater. It was recorded by Bruce Roper in his School Street studio. Poet Patricia Monaghan, and the DePaul Humanities Center, commissioned this […]
Michael, Anne, Jamie & Pail sing Crazy Mary
Welcome to this new feature! As of 9/20 my blog will have a new feature Song Notes, the stories and audio recordings of songs Michael wrote for me and/or performed with me. “To all of you who think you know meYou think you know my heartYou see me in cafes and thinkThat’s all there is […]
A note before reading. This website, and its contents: posts, history and reflections, are the domain of me, Jamie O’Reilly, a writer, performer, and friend of Michael’s. It is not a commercial or fan site. Nor do I act as agent, or handle his business affairs. Those roles will be his family’s to determine, now […]
In MemoriamMichael Peter SmithBorn September 7, 1941Died August 3, 2020 A note before reading. This website, and its contents: posts, history and reflections, are the domain of me, Jamie O’Reilly, a writer, performer, and friend of Michael’s. It is not a commercial or fan site. Nor do I act as agent, or handle his business […]
“I am fire,” he replied. “I love your solitude, I love your pride.” “Myself I long for love and light. But must it come so cruel, so bright?” Song Notes from Jamie O’ReillyMy blog will have this new feature: Song Notes, the stories and audio recordings of songs Michael wrote for me and/or performed with […]
Song Notes from Jamie O’ReillyMy blog will have this new feature: Song Notes, the stories and audio recordings of songs Michael wrote for me and/or performed with me. Michael P. Smith’s ethereal ballad,sung by Jamie O’Reilly with Miriam Sturm, violin This musical gem, from Michael and Jamie’s The Gift of the Magi album,features Jamie O’Reilly […]
Listen to The Holy City and Bells of St. Mary’s, medley from Songs of a Catholic Childhood. “Last night I lay asleepingThere came a dream so fairI stood in Old Jerusalem Beside a temple there.” “The Bells of St. Mary’sO, hear, they are calling…And so, my belovedWhen red leaves are fallingThe love bells shall ring […]
For My Daughters Meg and Nia Little Bear put his arms around his mother. He said: “Mother Bear, stop fooling. You are my Mother Bear. And I am your Little Bear, and we are on Earth. And you know it. Now may I eat my lunch?” “Yes”, said Mother Bear, “And then you will have […]
Our CD is on CD Baby.com
My In Old Chicago concert scheduled for Feb 1 at the Givins Castle will be rescheduled due to a death in the family. I lost my beloved sister Beth Ann Jane 17. Thank you for your support in this difficult time.
I always sang For Baby, the John Denver song with my sisters in the spring, with my sister Dorothy leading and her husband Billy playing piano. Here I am with 7 of my eight sister. And my sister-in-law and Mom. On an Easter Sunday. This recording I did as a gift for a friend. It’s […]
Winter is past. Now the rain is over and gone, and the flowers bloom in our land… Love is stronger than death.
Jamie’s “In Old Chicago” song demo is now mastered! A CD with 5 songs from my new show will be available to venues, media and my fans this December. Parts of it will be the soundtrack for a music video I’m making this winter. Thanks to Mary Mazurek, engineer at WFMT. And thanks to Michael […]
Read this as an Enewsletter: https://mailchi.mp/9b1c0985e20e/jamie-o-sept-enews-in-old-chicago-tix-on-sale-2388865 Autumn winds whirl as Leaves leave trees. Heavy snow on Halloween. Temperatures drop. Branches bow.Jiminy Cricket! Holy Cow! November’s comin’ in.Grab your coat ‘n get yer hat.It’s winter-time again! A note from JamieWith a big family to consider, plans to make, and grandchildren to entertain, the “holidays” start for […]
There is nothing I can give you which you have not got; but there is much, very much, that, while I cannot give it, you can take. No Heaven can come to us unless our hearts find rest in it to-day. Take Heaven! No peace lies in the future which is not hidden in this […]
“Without you Chicago would be bereft!” Rick Kogan, WGN Radio 720 am Here an excerpt as Rick interviews musicians John Devens and Jamie O’Reilly join the conversation in the studio to talk about the upcoming season on Concerts at the Castle, a series of concerts at the Givins Beverly Castle and Jamie gets ready for […]
His Eye is on the Sparrow While the snow covered Lake Shore Drive and we talked about going to war, Studs sang me Eye on the Sparrow—Mahalia’s song. “You should sing that.” (from Jamie’s blog 11.1.2008) I had an animated discussion with some of my family last weekend, initiated by my asking what some of […]
A Note from MichaelI was born on the same day of the month as Peter Lawford, which means I will never feel quite as handsome, suave and well-dressed as I might be, and Buddy Holly, which makes me feel grateful every year that I am not more talented and prematurely dead. There is a beautiful […]
Pictured “Eileen Dhu’- Dorothy (Nell) O’Reilly TuckerPublished early 1900s JOLIETA child came fresh from the prairies Where the clean-faced sun comes leaping o’er the mesas, Drawing a veil of mystery over the sage-brush And gilding the horns of the cattle; Came to live, for a while, in a mill-town. This was the town; First were […]
“I dreamed I was eating a giant marshmallow. And when I woke up, my pillow was gone.” WE WANT A REVOLUTION, NOW! Last night’s final dream was brought to me by my eldest daughter, who’d organized a zealous and fierce troupe of Millennials to come to my place: part ground level home, like my old […]
Come hear us! Givins Castle Concert in Beverly, Sat. July 20 and Woodstock Festival Sunday, July 21, honoring Anne Hills. Read this as Enews here:https://mailchi.mp/3f184b85f867/jamie-o-july-enews-writing-radio-gigs-2339245 Please come this Sat. July 20! Jamie sings a whole set, at a benefit for the Concerts at the Castle series in Chicago’s historic Beverly neighborhood! The setting is a castle, […]
Michael P. Smith July Gigs WisconsinDoor County, WISun July 7 at 7 PMFishstock Concert Music Series3127 County Road FFish Creek, WI 54212PH 414.659.1521http://www.fishstockmusic.com/door-county-concerts.shtml Wisconsin32nd annual Black Hawk Folk FestivalSat July 13 at 3:30 PMMt. Morris Town ParkCTH GMount Morris, WI 54982https://www.blackhawkfolk.org/festivalFACEBOOK https://www.facebook.com/blackhawkfolk/ Chicago area Sat July 20 at 7:00 pmGivins Beverly Castle10244 S. Longwood Drive, […]
Found Objects, a Blog series. A Poem. A Picture. A List.From whence comes my love of things. “Spend all you have for loveliness,Buy it and never count the cost;” (from Barter, by Sara Teasdale) La vérité est verte (The truth is green*)I think that I shall never seea hue quite like this verdigris.Used by all […]
The singer’s life: folly or fairytale? “All the intelligence and talent in the world can’t make a singer. The voice is a wild thing. It can’t be bred in captivity. It is a sport, like the silver fox. It happens.” (Willa Cather, Song of the Lark) I came to my Summer Solstice concert last Friday […]
I am a singer. “When we look back, the only things we cherish are those which in some way met our original want; the desire which formed in us in early youth, undirected, and of its own accord.” (Willa Cather, Song of the Lark) The Early Years: The Fine Arts BuildingMy first job in Chicago […]
Jamie O’Reilly’s Blog. An Introduction. Give me this sunny morning, light on the leaves of the sturdy geraniums, a soprano singing Franz Lehár on the radio, and the taste of summer-fresh strawberries. This brilliantly pleasing summer morning, I’ve set myself up at a white lace covered table, bleached in sunlight, on my newly redecorated porch. […]
Center Portion Arts Space presents a Summer Solstice Salon on Friday, June 21 at 8:00 PM. Vocalist Jamie O’Reilly performs an evening of songs and stories honoring summer in the city. Writer, and space curator Sheila Donohue hosts. This Logan Square gem is located at 2850 1/2 W. Fullerton Ave in Chicago. Admission is $20. […]
2019! I am thrilled to revisit the lovely songs I first sang when I was coming up as a voice student, and went on to sing for concerts, tributes and special cultural series throughout the Chicago area! I’m calling these the SONGBIRD songs. Accompanied by piano. More. Jamie presents music is by folk and art […]
You feel it in the air. The shorter days. The wet grass on your bare feet as you frantically run the bases one more time before heading in for supper. Summer is going and you’re being left behind… End of SummerThere was a ritual those late summer nights.After supper my Mom sprayed for mosquitoes,we left the […]
Studs would have been 100 this May 16. Here’s my comments on his centenary site, on the right of the page. http://studsterkelcentenary.wordpress.com/ Let’s say he IS 100 this May. Because Studs is a forever-kind-of thing. Postscript to 2008 I sang at his 90th birthday, and his 93rd. Then we lost him in the fall of […]