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The Girl With The Beret

New Concept Album from Irish Singer/songwriter Kate O’Callaghan


Comprised of a series of songs and spoken word tracks, which flow seamlessly from one into the other, Kate O’Callaghan weaves the story of a young woman caught up in the 1916 Rising in Dublin.
A fusion of alternative folk, popular ballad and classical strings. It gives a unique insight into the perspective of an ordinary girl living at that time and what it meant, as a female, to be involved in the Rebellion.

“A beautiful recording, a concept album in the best sense. It combines family memories, historic events and movingly personal reflections…This album is a moving tribute to bravery and deserves as wide an audience as possible” - Fatea Magazine, UK.

“Absolutely beautiful” - Myles Duncan, RTE Radio One

Live Performance on You Tube:

The Girl With The Beret features musicians:
Kate O’Callaghan, Seamus Devenny, Tim Jarvis, Declan McClafferty and Martin Smyth (from alt. rock band In Their Thousands), Stephen McDaid, Billy Robinson, Paul Devenny and Kevin Murphy.

Recorded and Mixed by Orri McBrearty at Attica Audio, Donegal.
Mastered by Richard Dowling at WavMastering, Limerick.

Available now on Bandcamp, iTunes & all major streaming sites from Release Date.

To Stream/Download Album Now

Via Bandcamp

Via Artist Website


’The Girl with The Beret’ is inspired by my great-grandaunt Katie, otherwise known as Catherine Rooney (née Byrne).
According to her witness statement, recorded with the Bureau of Military History (Ireland), she was the first woman to enter the GPO in Dublin on the day of the Rising on Easter Monday 1916. Having followed her brothers down O’Connell St., she kicked in a side window of the GPO and climbed in. She tended to the wounded, earning herself the title of ‘The Petticoat Heroine’ in the press in later years.

Katie also delivered several dispatches during the week, including one important note written by Joseph Plunkett and given to her by Pádraig Pearse. She concealed the note in her hair and brought it to the Four Courts. Katie describes running under fire and narrowly escaping death, when a bullet passed by her head leaving two holes in her beret. She also describes her family’s involvement in the War of Independence, in the years following the Rising. Their house, at 17 Nth Richmond St., was used as a secret HQ for a special squad called the ‘Guards of the Active Service Unit’. Firearms and ammunition were temporarily hidden in various secret places in the house, including the first Thompson gun smuggled into Ireland. Her Mother, Mrs Catherine Byrne (née Dowling), provided a safe house during this time, feeding and tending to the many men who were involved and needing a place to hide.


Kate O’Callaghan is a Donegal based singer/ songwriter who combines evocative melodies with intelligent considered lyrics. To date she has recorded & released an EP, debut Album, received National & International Radio Play and toured in Ireland, UK, Germany and the US.

Kate performed two Donegal Launch shows at The Regional Cultural Centre, Letterkenny and the Abbey Arts Centre, Ballyshannon - in collaboration with Donegal Camerata String Ensemble (supported by Ireland 2016 Centenary programme) last month, followed by a two week tour of Germany with her husband and fellow musician, Seamus Devenny.

Upcoming Live Gigs:

4th December 2016 - Bennigan’s Bar and Music venue, John Street. Derry BT48 6JY 10.30pm Admission free

11th December 2016 - DC Music Club, 20 Camden Row, Dublin 2. Tickets: €14/€12 9pm

Permalink - Posted: November 23, 2016 at 10:10 am