Imelda May

Pencil Portrait by Antonio Bosano.

Imelda May Pencil Portrait
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The quality of the prints are at a much higher level compared to the image shown on the left.


A3 Pencil Print-Price £20.00-Purchase

A4 Pencil Print-Price £15.00-Purchase

*Limited edition run of 250 prints only*

All Pencil Prints are printed on the finest Bockingford Somerset Velvet 255 gsm paper.

P&P is not included in the above prices.


By 2013, Irish rockabilly queen Imelda May had come a long way since her self-released debut album eight years earlier. Her 3rd major label album ‘Mayhem’ generated precisely that throughout the world, clearly finding an audience who weren’t being catered for by most modern artists. Her stompin’ anthems ‘Johnny Got A Boom Boom’, ‘Psycho’ and ‘Inside Out’ could have been 1950s classics.

Her special blend of old rock ‘n’ roll with rhythm ‘n’ blues took listeners on a twistin’ ride through influences by Wanda Jackson, Eddie Cochran and Gene Vincent, but all delivered by Imelda’s own unique voice and lyrics. As Jeff Beck discovered, she could multi-track her voice in exquisite fashion, a point duly noted by the late great Les Paul – so uncanny being her ability to recreate his wife Mary Ford’s classic 50’s recordings. As Clash magazine so succinctly put it – “The problem with an artist like Imelda May is that she’s so good, it makes a critical review almost impossible to write; her performance is flawless.”

For me personally, it meant that I could finally mention her name in company without automatically drawing nonplussed looks from all and sundry. It had taken time and she’d paid her club dues, but at 39, this musical goddess was set to go viral. What would follow was therefore somewhat unexpected with changes in her personal life, musical style and appearance. Still, all great artists evolve over time, so perhaps we shouldn’t have been surprised.

A precocious singer from her mid-teens with a taste for blues and rock’n’roll, she turned professional in the early Noughties, her UK career taking off after she secured a barnstorming performance on “Later… With Jools Holland” in 2008. Amongst her acknowleged fans is one Robert Zimmerman (aka Bob Dylan). One can only presume he loved her 2017 release “Life Love Flesh Blood,” perhaps principally for the heartfelt quality of her new compositions. The album was her most personal, powerful and heartfelt work to date, a huge leap from the vibrant, playful take on rockabilly, swing and jazz she had essayed on such vivacious tunes as “Johnny Got A Boom Boom” and “Big Bad Handsome Man”.

Unfortunately, this album would top and tail a period of upheaval and pain, from which the artist had emerged triumphantly, maintaining her classic tastes, while losing the more colourful retro stylings. Fittingly, gone too were the leopard skin prints in favour of plain black, and that distinctive spiralling quiff that meant the cover of the 2011 breakthrough album “Mayhem” featured her in still recognisable cartoon form. Window dressing aside, May’s writing would draw on the dramas of the previous two years, most notably the divorce in 2015 from her husband of 13 years, guitarist Darrel Higham.

Recommended listening

Love Tattoo (2008)

Mayhem (2010)

Tribal (2014)

Life Love Flesh Blood (2017)


Imelda May (Official Website)