Wallis Bird at Helium, Longford 2013
For an hour on stage Wallis and the crowd were one family; a Helium family, to which she conveyed so much humour in between songs. “We are Helium family shams (Ed note: Longford slang), oh I heard all about that” (Ed: I think she is slagging us). Not to mention her praising Ballymahon local “Famous Seamus” during her set.
She donned a Helium t-shirt quipping “this is how you wear a Helium festival t-shirt” and joked that her long braid of hair looked like it was growing out of her arm pit. Wallis is witty, clever and captivating, reeling in every audience member with her guitar string rod. Not even cutting her finger on stage could stop her from playing; “it’s fine, there is blood all over the stage” as she continued with a blood stained guitar.
With her slower songs everyone took time to take a breath and just listen but like an electric shock everyone broke into full dance, Wallis included, and the party continued. She took the time afterward to enjoy the headline acts and also the praise from everyone who seen her. Wallis Bird will definitely go down in Helium history as a festival favourite.
Backstage offers a different insight into Wallis Bird. The girl who made such a big sound on stage is actually reserved, self-deprecating and completely laid back. Quite the contradiction to her stage self, Wallis appears shy and delicate, a far cry from the huge persona she amplifies on stage. She welcomes us with open arms and a warm and loving nature, answering all our questions intently and taking time to joke and get to know us also. It is great to see fame hasn’t gone to her head as she takes it all in her stride. Definitely one to look out for.