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Foy Vance (born 1974)[1][2] is an Irish musician and singer-songwriter signed to Gingerbread Man Records[3]. Vance has toured as a support act to British singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran and his music has been featured on numerous TV shows. In August 2013 he released his second full-length album, Joy of Nothing, which was produced by Irish producer and arranger Michael Keeney and was met with critical praise, being called "a gorgeous collection of open, uplifting songs, which showcase [Vance's] magnificent songwriting skills."[4][5] In May 2016 his third studio album The Wild Swan, produced and mixed by Jacquire King, was released and it was announced that Vance would support Elton John on selected tour dates in June and Josh Groban in July and August.

Foy Vance
Foy Vance 2013.jpg
Vance in 2013
Background information
Born1974 (age 44–45)
Bangor, County Down, Northern Ireland
  • Musician
  • singer-songwriter
  • Vocals
  • guitar
  • piano
Years active2006–present
Associated acts


Music careerEdit

2006–11: Early Career and HopeEdit

Vance's first single, "Gabriel and the Vagabond", was released on 18 December 2006 on Wurdamouth Records. The single's B-side was "Indiscriminate Act of Kindness". The songs "Homebird" and "Gabriel and the Vagabond" were both featured in the second season of the US TV drama Grey's Anatomy.[6]

"Indiscriminate Act of Kindness" is featured in a TV commercial for Great Ormond Street Hospital, which was aired in the UK up until Christmas of 2006.[7] Vance, who often uses alternative tunings for his guitar, had previously released two limited edition EPs on Wurdamouth Records, Live Sessions and the Birth Toilet Tour and Watermelon Oranges.[8][9]

On 21 July 2007 Vance's debut album, Hope, was self-released via Wurdamouth Records.[10] The album obtained some critical acclaim within the UK with the album track "Two Shades of Hope", which contains a hidden recording of Vance's daughter, Ella, singing "You Are My Sunshine" at the end.[11] His pianist is London based composer Jules Maxwell.[12]

From 2007 Vance performed his contemporary songs at Ireland's largest annual Christian youth festival Summer Madness at the King's Hall, Belfast for several consecutive years.[13]

In early 2008 Vance was invited to perform at a number of prisons in England, including New Hall women's prison near Wakefield and Full Sutton maximum security prison near York.[14]

In 2010 Vance, along with David Holmes, composed the music for a short film by director Terry George, and as a result was offered a part in the director's next feature film, Whole Lotta Sole, as a busker. The short film, The Shore, won a 2012 Academy Award.[citation needed]

2011–12: The Melrose EPEdit

On 31 January 2011 Vance went to Los Angeles to finish the recording of The Melrose EP with Holmes. During his trip to L.A., Vance put on a special show for fans.[15]

As part of Belfast Music Week 2011, Vance hosted a hoedown branded as "Foy Vance and Friends". It featured a spread of Vance's close friends from Belfast who joined him on the stage. The event sold out Ulster Hall in the city.[citation needed]

During 2012's South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, Vance was programmed as part of Brooklyn Vegan's tribute event to Daniel Johnston.[16]

On 27 August 2012 Vance released The Melrose EP, on Communion Records. The EP featured four new tracks which were produced by Holmes. The EP makes up the score of Terry George's Academy Award winning film The Shore and the lead track from the EP, "Be The Song" has featured on episodes of Private Practice, House, Arrow, Haven and Constantine in addition to the film Warm Bodies.[17][18]

Vance performed at BBC's Proms in the Park in Belfast on 8 September 2012.[19] In late 2012 Vance was one of the support acts for British artist Ed Sheeran's UK tour. As well as his support slot on the tour, Vance came on stage during Sheeran's main set to duet on his song "Kiss Me" from Sheeran's album +.[20] Vance went on to support Sheeran on the US-leg of his tour,[21] where the pair again duetted on "Kiss Me".[22] Sheeran has also been known to cover Vance's song "Guiding Light," which often closes Vance's headline sets.[23][24]

2013: Joy of NothingEdit

In early 2013 Vance signed with Glassnote Records and completed his new album, Joy of Nothing, which was released on 26 August.[25] The album announcement was accompanied by a music video for the song "Joy of Nothing" which featured Vance and his daughter Ella.[26] The album includes vocal features from Bonnie Raitt and Ed Sheeran,[4] the latter of whom expressed his excitement for the release.[27] On 10 June 2013 Vance released a 22-minute documentary, Recording Nothing, showing the process of writing and recording the album.[28]

Vance performed at Tennent's Vital on 15 August 2013 along with headliners Snow Patrol, and also toured with Bonnie Raitt throughout the UK.[29][30] He and Sheeran traded cameos, with Sheeran joining Vance on stage at the Bowery Ballroom on 4 November 2013 and Vance joining Sheeran at Madison Square Garden on 7 November 2013.

On 12 November 2013 Joy of Nothing won the inaugural Northern Ireland Music Prize for best album. Other nominees included Tired Pony, Girls Names, and Two Door Cinema Club.[31]

2015–present: The Wild SwanEdit

In July 2015 Vance appeared at the Barn on the Farm festival at Over Farm, Over, near Gloucester[32] and recorded a number of session for the festival's YouTube channel.[33]

In November 2015 Vance signed with Sheeran's Gingerbread Man Records, and on 13 May 2016 he released his third studio album, The Wild Swan. Reviewing the album for the London Evening Standard, Andre Paine commented: ".. after a decade as a jobbing songwriter, Vance deserves a commercial breakthrough."[34]

In May 2016 it was announced that Vance would support Elton John in June on selected dates of his Wonderful Crazy Tour in Europe.[35] On 10 September Vance embarked on his Wild Swan World Tour with a sold-out performance in Perth. After Australia, the tour was scheduled to include dates in North America, the UK and Europe.[36]

Vance co-wrote a song, "Pushin' Time", with Miranda Lambert and Natalie Hemby that appeared on Lambert's album, The Weight of These Wings, which was released in November 2016.[37]

In December 2016 Vance released the single "Moonshine", which appeared on the soundtrack for the Ben Affleck film, Live by Night. "Moonshine" features Kacey Musgraves and is meant to pay tribute to "the films strong female characters," whilst telling "the story of a bootlegger running moonshine." [38] In January 2017 a music video was released for "Moonshine" and premiered on[39]


On 4 June 1994 Vance appeared as Andrew Strong of The Commitments on the TV talent show Stars in Their Eyes.[40] In 2012 his music was used in several episodes of The CW series Beauty and the Beast.[41][citation needed]

In 2007 Vance appeared on RTE's Other Voices, filmed in Dingle, Ireland.[42] Vance took part in the Channel 4 series, where he spoke about how profound he found the hymn, "Amazing Grace", how it impacted him hearing a vagabond at Ground Zero, New York, playing this song.[43] A Channel 4 documentary about Vance, covered all aspects of his career from him growing up, playing shows in Ireland, playing a show in New York with Pete Townshend, and organically recording his debut album Hope.[44] In September 2011 Vance joined Snow Patrol on the BBC Two's Later... with Jools Holland, to perform their single, "Fallen Empires".[45] In May 2015 Vance appeared with Rudimental on Later with Jools Holland.



  • Hope (Wurdamouth Records, 2007)
  • Joy of Nothing (Glassnote Records, 2013)
  • The Wild Swan (Gingerbread Man, 13 May 2016) No. 28 UK, No. 10 IRE,[46] No. 87 AUS[47]
  • From Muscle Shoals (Gingerbread Man, 28 June 2019)[48]


  • Blueprints EP (2000)
  • Live Sessions and the Birth of the Toilet Tour (2005)
  • Watermelon Oranges (2006)
  • Gabriel and the Vagabond (2006)
  • Be with me Remix by The Free Association (2008)
  • Portraits of the Artist (2009)
  • Time Lays Low (2009)
  • Live with the Ulster Orchestra at the Waterfront Hall Belfast (2009)
  • Melrose EP (2012)


  1. ^ Donnelly, Dave. "Foy Vance: Biography by Dave Donnelly". AllMusic. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  2. ^ Murphy, Lauren (2 August 2013). "Foy Vance on how the Scottish Highlands saved him". The Irish Times.
  3. ^ Bartleet, Larry. "Foy Vance becomes second signing to Ed Sheeran's label Gingerbread Man Records". NME. Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  4. ^ a b Alex (10 June 2013). "Foy Vance new album: Joy of Nothing (+ documentary) | Folk Radio UK". Retrieved 22 June 2013.
  5. ^ Coleman, Maureen. "ALBUM REVIEW: Joy of Nothing". Culture Ireland. Retrieved 10 August 2014.
  6. ^ "Music Showcase – Just Added – Foy Vance – I Got Love". BBC. 4 September 2011. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  7. ^ "Foy Vance: Irish soul music and Indiscriminate Acts Of Kindness". Cross Rhythms. 14 January 2008. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  8. ^ "Foy Vance | Watermelon Oranges Ep EP Review". Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  9. ^ "One on One with... FOY VANCE!". One on One Music. Retrieved 10 August 2014.
  10. ^ British Broadcasting Corporation (7 February 2007). "Northern Ireland – Across The Line". BBC. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  11. ^ "Biography". Foy Vance. Glassnote Records. Archived from the original on 12 August 2014. Retrieved 10 August 2014.
  12. ^ Taylor Bruce (21 April 2008). "Foy Vance: The Homebird's Chorus :: Music :: Features :: Paste". Paste. Retrieved 25 June 2013.
  13. ^ "Summer Madness". Retrieved 26 June 2016.
  14. ^ James, Erwin (4 July 2008). "Erwin James reports on the effect musicians visiting prisons may have on the inmates". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  15. ^ "Introducing Mr. Foy Vance". Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  16. ^ "BV Presents Daniel Johnston's 'Space Ducks' SXSW Launch Party w/ Daniel, Built to Spill & many more performing". Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  17. ^ "Foy Vance – Melrose EP release – Communion". 19 July 2012. Archived from the original on 6 October 2013. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  18. ^ Warm Bodies Movie (2013) Soundtrack (1 February 2013). "Warm Bodies Soundtrack List | Warm Bodies Movie (2013)". Retrieved 22 June 2013.
  19. ^ ATL. "Across the Line: Foy Vance releases 'Melrose' EP". BBC. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  20. ^ Callum Moorin (14 October 2012). "Ed Sheeran w/ Foy Vance and Passenger". Archived from the original on 6 October 2013. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  21. ^ "Concert review: Foy Vance at Islington Assembly Hall". 14 March 2013. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  22. ^ "Live Review: Ed Sheeran with Foy Vance and Rizzle Kicks at Rams Head Live, Baltimore, MD – 29th January 2013". 26 February 2013. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  23. ^ AdidasOriginals91 (16 September 2012). "Ed Sheeran – Guiding Light (LIVE beim SWR3 New Pop Festival 2012 in Baden- Baden)". YouTube. Retrieved 22 June 2013.
  24. ^ "Ed Sheeran & Foy Vance: 'We both love a drink, so there's never". The Independent. 8 September 2013. Retrieved 9 October 2017.
  25. ^ Glassnote Records. "Joy Of Nothing". Foy Vance. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  26. ^ LeePL (25 February 2013). "Foy Vance – Joy Of Nothing". YouTube. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  27. ^ "Twitter / edsheeran: very fortunate to have been given an early copy". Retrieved 22 June 2013.
  28. ^ "Foy Vance". Recording Nothing. Archived from the original on 13 June 2013. Retrieved 22 June 2013.
  29. ^ Across The Line. "Blogs – Across the line – Snow Patrol headline Vital with guests Foy Vance and Kodaline". BBC. Retrieved 22 June 2013.
  30. ^ Natalie Xenos (13 June 2013). "Joy Of Nothing – Foy Vance". Culturefly. Retrieved 22 June 2013.
  31. ^ Jones, Rhian (13 November 2013). "Foy Vance wins inaugural Northern Ireland Music Prize". Music Week. Intent Media. Retrieved 10 August 2014.
  32. ^ "Barn on the Farm 2015 lineup complete". Retrieved 26 June 2016.
  33. ^ Barnonthefarm (30 December 2015). "Foy Vance – Upbeat Feel Good – Barn on the Farm Sessions". YouTube. Retrieved 26 June 2016 – via YouTube.
  34. ^ andre Paine. "Foy Vance – The Wild Swan, review: 'deserves a commercial breakthrough'". Retrieved 16 May 2016.
  35. ^ "Foy to Support Elton John on Tour". Foy Vance. Retrieved 16 May 2016.
  36. ^ "Foy Vance – The Wild Swan World Tour Starts Today". Retrieved 14 February 2017.
  37. ^ Leahey, Andrew (16 November 2016). "Miranda Lambert's 'The Weight of These Wings': A Track-by-Track Guide". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 29 December 2016.
  38. ^ "Hear Foy Vance, Kacey Musgraves' Stomping New Song 'Moonshine'". Retrieved 14 February 2017.
  39. ^ "Foy Vance & Kacey Musgraves Team Up For New Song 'Moonshine': Video Premiere". Retrieved 14 February 2017.
  40. ^ "Stars in their Eyes (1994)". 16 April 2009. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  41. ^ "Music from Beauty and the Beast S2E16". Tunefind. Retrieved 28 January 2018.
  42. ^ "Other Voices | Foy Vance". Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  43. ^ "Foy Vance – Why is Amazing Grace so amazing?". Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  44. ^ foyvancemusic (12 August 2009). "Foy Vance – 4Play". YouTube. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  45. ^ "Twitter / foyvance: Singing with Snow Patrol on Later with Jools". Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  46. ^ "GFK Chart-Track". 16 June 2016. Retrieved 21 June 2016.
  47. ^ Ryan, Gavin (21 May 2016). "ARIA Albums: Keith Urban Spends Second Week at No 1". Noise11. Retrieved 21 May 2016.
  48. ^

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