Rice - Biography
(born December 7, 1970) is an Irish musician, born in
Celbridge, County Kildare, some 22 kilometres/13 miles from
Dublin, whose album O was successful.
originally the singer for Juniper,
a rock band which released the singles "The World Is Dead"
and "Weatherman". On the eve of recording their first full
album for Polygram in 1999, Rice became disenchanted with
the commercial direction he felt pushed into by the label,
and quit. His Juniper bandmates became Bell X1. He moved to
rural Italy where he played acoustic guitar, wrote songs,
and busked around
Europe until he was able to form a band and get coffeeshop gigs
Dublin area. Exploiting a lucky connection to David Arnold, his
second cousin, Rice was able to record O, for which
he won the Shortlist Music Prize in 2003. The other members
of the band are Lisa Hannigan
who sings and occasionally plays guitar and bass; cellist
Vyvienne Long; percussionist
Tom Osander (aka: Tomo) a
member of the groundbreaking 90's jam band God Street Wine;
and bassist Shane Fitzsimons.
Blower's Daughter" and "Cold Water" were featured on the
2004 Mike Nichols film Closer. "Cold Water" was also
featured in the TV drama ER , in the movies Stay,
The Girl in the Café , and I Am David.
"Delicate" was featured in the movie Dear Frankie as
well as on the TV dramas Lost, House, Alias
and CSI: Miami and "Cannonball" was featured in the
movie In Good Company, in the TV series The L Word
and the dramedy The O.C.
2004, 'Cannonball' was re-mixed for
radio to make it more radio-friendly. Rice later was
reported to be very unhappy with it, saying to Tom Dunne on
PetSounds (Today FM) that he did not "...really like it". He
stated that he had allowed the remix to go through only if
he signed a contract that would forbid anyone from ever
remixing one of his songs ever again.
recorded an old Juniper track, "Cross-eyed Bear" (originally
titled "Jewellery Box"), for the new War Child album.
spent 2004 and 2005 recording the follow-up to O.
During a recent concert in Toronto, he confirmed that the
recording is done and a release is expected in late
2006. According to Damien's record label, 14th Floor
Records, the new album, 9, was released on November
has often become annoyed with audience members who speak
through his set. At an Australian gig, he reportedly shouted
to an audience member who was speaking that he'd give him
his ticket money, plus parking fare if he left the arena. At
a Los Angeles show, he was displeased that
and her date Colin Farrell talked during his set. "She's a
pain in the arse," he told The Guardian.
gradual success of Rice’s 2002 debut, "O", took him from
cult status to over-exposure. Fortunately, it hasn’t blunted
his songwriting. "9" is a delicate and sometimes bleak
record, verging at times on the melodramatic, with Rice
apparently exploring the entrails of a terrible romantic
His debt to Leonard Cohen is evident and, while the music
sometimes swells to gloomy thunder (even sounding like PJ
Harvey on "Me, My Yoke And I"), Rice is at his best when
he’s quiet. The vocal on "Elephant" is brave, staking a
terrain right on the edge of embarrassment, and the single
"9 Crimes" is a tender duet with regular foil Lisa Hannigan.
"O" fans will appreciate the sweet simplicity of "Dogs",
while the Nick Cave-like "Accidental Babies" is a grimly
intimate exploration of jealousy.
Rice is also involved in a human rights campaign to free
Burmese leader Aung San Suu Kyi, who is presently being
subjected to her third house arrest in Rangoon by the
Burmese military - this time having been confined to her
home since September 2003. Damien and Lisa recorded a
charity song, campaigning for her being set free, called "Unplayed
Rice Official Website
Music Bios A-Z
Free Music Tools
Artists & Bands Gallery