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Mary Coughlan ‘Bloody Mary: My Story’ Autobiography

August 19, 2010 by  

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Mary Coughlan ‘Bloody Mary: My Story’ Autobiography

UK release November 4th 2010

Galway-born torch singer Mary Coughlan’s autobiography is a funny, moving and typically outspoken memoir. Mary pulls no punches as she recalls sexual abuse as a child, the oblivion of alcohol addiction, emotional abandonment of her children, the suicide attempts and the repeated admission to psychiatric hospitals.

Since she rose to international fame in 1985 with her seminal Irish jazz album ‘Tired and Emotional’, Mary Coughlan’s battles with addiction, the problems in her personal life and career have been well documented. But until now she has never spoken of the traumatic events in her childhood that led to a life of rebellion, running away, and reliance on drugs and alcohol

Detailing her battles with the bottle, her suicide attempts and her confinement in psychiatric hospitals, Mary tells of how, after hitting rock-bottom, she pulled herself out of the dregs of a vodka bottle to confront the foundations of her problems head-on. As she tells her story with a ribald, running commentary on the highs and lows of celebrity culture — we get to experience an alternative evolution of Ireland in the ’70s and ’80s, populated with hippies, rock stars and movie moguls, and one wild Irish girl determined to live a life less ordinary.

Mary’s latest album ‘The House Of Ill Repute’ serves as a companion piece to this book. A collection of “starling songs of lust and disillusion” (Mojo Magazine) recorded after the break up of her marriage, the album runs the gamut of emotions with anger, bitterness, betrayal and regret. Mary’s interpretation of Kirsty MacColl’s wry discourse on misadventure ‘Bad’ is uncannily autobiographical “I’ve been an awful woman all my life / A dreadful daughter and a hopeless wife”

On its original release in 2009, the album attracted great acclaim. Sunday Times Culture wrote “the night-time devils of her childhood have finally been exorcised so when she sings “I made it through the hard times / Now I sing the blues” she really means it” and The Word Magazine “one of those rare long players that goes all the way, Coughlan deserves the respect that far too many other people get far too readily.” Financial Times acknowledged that “no one should wish her heartbreak, but everyone should envy her power to transform it” and The Guardian declared that “Tom Waits has met his Irish match”.

Mary Coughlan will be in London to perform at Ronnie Scott’s on 13 & 14 October 2010 and is available for interview. “The House of Ill Repute” will be re-issued on 18 October as a bonus edition with a new single ‘Angel’.



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