Imelda May to be honoured with Artist of the Year Award at The Irish Post Awards 2017

Imelda May to be honoured with Artist of the Year Award at The Irish Post Awards 2017

SINGER Imelda May will be honoured at this year's Irish Post Awards - which will be televised live for the first time.

The Irish songstress will accept the Artist of the Year Award at the ceremony in London on November 23.

The Dubliner will also give a special performance on the evening.

More than 1,000 people will gather in The Great Room at the Grosvenor House Hotel on Park Lane for the 40th anniversary of The Irish Post Awards.

Hosted by renowned broadcaster and TV personality Eamonn Holmes, the Awards ceremony honours Irish success and achievement in business, community, sport, film, music, entertainment, politics and more.

The Irish Post has also signed an exclusive deal to broadcast this year’s awards live on television for the first time.

Irish public service broadcaster TG4 will screen the red carpet ceremony from London to homes across Ireland.

An estimated global audience of one million is expected for the live show on TV and online via social media channels.

Having sung the Irish national anthem this summer in Las Vegas to a global audience of millions before the Conor McGregor Floyd Mayweather fight, this year Imelda May has found a new groove.

Exploring blues, soul, gospel, folk, rock, sensitive acoustica, cinematic drama and explosive balladry she has written a set of the boldest, most personal and intimately autobiographical songs ever.

Long celebrated by peers as one of the most sensational singers of contemporary music, the Dubliner has made the album of her life.

Imelda May  (Picture by Chris Egan)

“I've called it Life Love Flesh Blood because that encompasses everything,” says Imelda. “It's all in there: birth, sex, love, divorce and death. It's the story of my life.”

The album was produced by the legendary T Bone Burnett and features a band of some of the finest musicians in America with guest appearances by guitar hero Jeff Beck and piano maestro Jools Holland.

Longtime Imelda May fan Bono has already been singing its praises: “I love the girl she used to be but I think I love even more the woman she’s become.

“Still mischievous and playful, still a siren but there’s an ache in her voice now that has me with a glass at my ear to the wall of her world where trouble has entered the room.

“There’s an erotic power here that’s not just feminine power. She makes truth telling an invitation to intimacy.”

Imelda has been through a lot in the run up to recording. She became a mother for the first time in 2012 but her 18 year marriage ended in 2015, coinciding with a burst of creativity.

Imelda's reputation as a vocalist can be deduced from the company she keeps, performing over the years with Lou Reed, Smokey Robinson, Tom Jones, Meat Loaf, David Gilmore, Sinead O'Connor, Wanda Jackson, Lulu, Paolo Nutini, The Dubliners, The Chieftains, U2, Robert Plant and many more.

“I always loved the Fifties rockabilly style but there was a point where I felt I was almost dressing up as Imelda May.

"It was as if I was getting into character for a gig. And I didn’t want to do that any more. This is me," she says.

“Life changed. I love the albums I made before. They were honest to the person I was. But that was then … and this is now.”

The Irish Post Awards take place in London on November 23 (Picture: Malcolm McNally)

The Apprentice star and West Ham United Vice-Chairman Baroness Karren Brady and singer-songwriter, author and political activist Bob Geldof will also be among those honoured on the night.

Previous Irish Post award-winners have included Terry Wogan, Daniel Day Lewis, Michael Flatley and Doctor Mo Mowlam.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan delivered last year’s keynote speech, where guests and honourees included football legends Roy Keane and Martin O’Neill as well as actor Shane Richie and Hollywood star Fionnula Flanagan.

This year’s Irish Post Awards will also feature four live music acts, produced by The Irish Post through knowledge gained from its Irish TV acquisition.

Among those will be an exclusive performance by Irish bands Kodaline and Beoga.

Irish Post Owner and Publisher Elgin Loane said: “We are very pleased to partner with TG4 to showcase the Irish abroad and connect a big diaspora event with mainstream live television in Ireland.”

TG4 Director General, Alan Esslemont, said: “The Irish diaspora, in Britain and worldwide, is an important and growing audience for TG4. We are very excited to extend our partnership to take on the role as the broadcaster for The Irish Post Awards for the first time.

“It is a wonderful and unique opportunity to celebrate Irish life and achievement abroad.”

This month's Awards television deal with TG4 follows the successful broadcast of The Irish Post Country Music Awards live from Co. Armagh in August.

The Irish Post now reaches a global audience through its website, weekly newspaper and social media channels.