Imelda May returns to Wolverhampton


One might have expected Imelda May to be taking things easy on the music front after becoming a mother for the first time last summer but the Dublin singer shows no signs of stepping off the gas just yet.

Imelda is embarking on a British tour that will see her visit Wolverhampton this autumn, in a year which also sees her turn 40.

She will be performing with Scott Weiland & The Wildabouts at The Slade Rooms, Wolverhampton on Tuesday October 6.

Imelda will be playing plenty of familiar favourites, along with tracks from her most recent album ‘Tribal’.

Anyone expecting her to have switched to a softer style and ballads would be mistaken though.

“There are no lullabies on this album,” said the woman who has brought rockabilly back into fashion 60 years after it was kicked into life by young men like Carl Perkins and Elvis Presley, Gene Vincent and Jerry Lee Lewis.

‘Tribal’ is as primal a rock ‘n’ roll record as could be found, infused with the spirit of Sun Studios, where the sound was born in Memphis, Tennessee – but given a 21st century kick by a girl from the back streets of Dublin.

“Motherhood is amazing, it has changed my day-to-day life and it’s changed my priorities,” said Imelda.

“But it hasn’t changed the person I am. I’m still me. I still want to have fun and I still love rock ‘n’ roll!”

‘Tribal’ – her third album since signing for Decca in 2008, following ‘Love Tattoo’ and the Top Ten hit ‘Mayhem’ – has been described by some as her punchiest yet.

The songs on ‘Tribal’ are infused with the rebel spirit that launched rock ‘n’ roll on an unsuspecting world way back in the mid-1950s, but also the rebel spirit of the punk bands Imelda admired growing up in Dublin in the late 1970s as the youngest of five siblings – The Clash and The Undertones, The Buzzcocks and The Cramps.

Imelda said: “Rocking out is the way I feel. That’s why I wanted to inject the rebelliousness of punk and early rock ‘n ‘roll into this album. That’s what drives me.”

Imelda was first drawn to the retro sound of rockabilly by an older brother’s cassettes of Elvis, Eddie Cochran and Gene Vincent when she was a little girl. Later on, she was drawn to Ian Dury and Adam Ant on Top of the Pops.

“I liked the scariness of them,” she said. “And I remember being terrified by The Specials singing Ghost Town. And also by horror films. I was drawn to the thrill, the combination of edginess and fun. And that’s what still does it for me.”

Her heroes and heroines come from all corners and all eras of popular music – 1950s singers Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Wynona Carr, rockabilly queen Wanda Jackson, country superstars Patsy Cline and Dolly Parton and a string of rock and pop icons: Joan Jett, Patti Smith, Debbie Harry and Chrissie Hynde.

* Tickets are priced £27.50 (£25 + £2.50 booking fee) are available from Midland Box Office on 0870 320 7000 or online at