Conor The Tour Manager
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CFU HITS IRELAND
August 25th 2000
Finally, Cartel Fans United International has an Iriah branch! Thanks to Veronice Sonmark, a.k.a. Nikki, Irish Cartel fans now have their own CFU division. The site is still under construction, but is looking great already... check it out at the following URL:
CARTEL IN THE TELEGRAPH
August 21st 2000
We here at Cartel Online were reviewed last weekend in Britain's biggest-selling Saturday paper, the Daily Telegraph! And, modesty aside, we got a great review! The article, which found it's way into millions of homes around the UK and Ireland, plugged both us here at Cartel Online, and the CFU worldwide fanclub (Oh yeah, and the boys themselves too!!!). The story was all thanks to UK-based Laura Archdale - the latest addition to Cartel's publicity team. Keep your eyes peeled folks - with a top posse of publicists like we have, the boys'll be all over the gaff and in your face really soon! If you want to do your bit to help promote the lads, pop into our Promote Cartel section of the site.
TIM RETURNS TO CALGARY
August 15th 2000
He’s going home! Tim’ll be heading back home to Calgary, Alberta, Canada in the next couple of weeks, in the run-up to the next phase of the Cartel project. This all came out during a special band meeting on Friday last. Nicky was unable to attend, but still gave his two cents worth via. speaker phone! I was there, along with Tim and Darragh, to have the first major discussion about the band’s direction in several months. The guys produced a prepared statement, in which Tim was quoted as saying: “I know it’s been a long year, and we’re so grateful for everyone’s patience, but we’re now so close! We are literally weeks, away from finally completing the sound, style and image we’ve wanted. Thing is, we did it all without any outside help from management, a record label, financial backing – it’s all us! Within the next five weeks, we will finally begin considering offers from potential managers, and then go on to seek out the record label hat will give us the right package! I can’t wait”. It’s a very exciting time to be involved with this, as the three guys move on to the next – and most important – stage of Cartel so far. The next five weeks will see the band vanish into the studios to work on a new batch of fully original material, whilst Tim will spent three of those weeks at home in Calgary, working with a new Canadian producer, meeting with the original website design crew to oversee the final phase of the Cartel Online make-over, and hopefully getting a few days to relax at home with his family in between! Expect a few live performances around Ireland from the Cartel boys in September / October, with a whole new level of Cartel exposure to follow… Thanks for sticking with them guys… It’ll be worth the wait!
AIN'T NO STOPPIN' US NOW
August 8th 2000
Big congrats to the Cartel boys on a stunning gig last night in Dublin. Myself and Maria were there representing Cartel Online, and all I can say is that the boys were on form and kickin' ass! Incredible to see the guys perform with their backing video on 20ft screens behind them! Mucho thanks to all the crew at the Temple Bar Music Centre for helping the guys put on a great show, especially Eddie McGuinness and Tommy Egan, for their professionalism and support for the band. Shout-outs to Cartel's new dancers too - Donna, Aileen, Suzin, well done, and welcome to the team! Pics of the gig coming soon! Can't really say anything, but with the way offers are pouring in, well, just you wait!!! Big band meeting scheduled for Friday - Not sure what it's about, but I'll put all the news up as soon as I have it.
CARTEL LIVE ON MONDAY!
August 4th 2000
Ooops - we shouldn't have said anything! It turns out Cartel are to be special surprise guests at Pop Madness next Monday in Dublin. Ah well, now that the cat's out of the bag, we'll give you the rest of the details. The event, which will be hosted by top Irish promoters Eddie McGuinness and Tommy Egan, takes place at the Temple Bar Music Centre in downtown Dublin, on Bank Holiday Monday August 7th. It's a daytime event, beginning at 2pm, and will feature plenty of top pop acts as well as a three-song live set from Tim, Darragh, and Nicky. Tickets will be available at the door, but be sure to arrive a bit early to avoid disappointment. Just one thing though... When the Cartel boys come on stage, remember to act surprised!!!
DARRAGH'S BIRTHDAY BASH ROCKS!
JulY 28th 2000
Darragh may have turned 21 last Monday, but the major celebrations were held off for last night. Big D's 21st Birthday Bash, which originally started out as a surprise [for about five minutes], was a strictly-no-cameras affair, but - as promised - I got all the goss from the party... All of Darragh's family, as well as his closest friends, were there to wish him a happy birthday. That's not to say that the night was without incident, of course... Here are the highlights...
Tim was mortified when he arrived, finding that himself, Darragh, and Nicky had ALL showed up wearing baggy jeans and white tops! "People will think we're a boy band!" he complained...
Nicky, who drove 300 miles to be there, was - as ever - the life and soul of the party, talking the arse off anyone who came within two feet of him...
Anyone who knows Darragh almost died when they saw him do the Whigfield 'Saturday Night' dance!!! No really!!!...
The Cartel backing dancers Gillan and Ursula were the hottest girls of the night, largin' it up on the dance floor, and generally attracting the attention of every red-blooded male in the room!...
The queue to give Darragh his twenty-one birthday kisses ran right accross the dance-floor. The girls who didn't make the first twenty wound up being disappointed though - The twenty-first kiss was reserved for Darragh's mam, Margaret...
The Cartel boys were, of course, roped into singing. They gave an impromptu acappella version of 'Soundtrack Of My Life'. The beautiful ballad brought the house down, even though Nicky sang the wrong lyrics (He later claimed that he was singing the 'Intoxicated Remix' of the song)...
Tim spent much of the night chatting with two rather lovely Canadian girls from his hometown of Calgary. He said they were cool, and reminded him of home, but we think he was just trying to charm the pants off them...
Dar's little sis Karla kicked ass on the dancefloor, suggesting that our Darragh may not the only future-star in the Deane family...
The Cartel lads had to be dragged from the club at the end of the night - They were busy belting out 4-part BoyzIIMen acappellas with former band-mate, Emmett Kirwan....
As soon as the club closed, the party spilled back to Darragh's house, and is probably still going as we speak. A bit of a strange affair, with Darragh's 'Ultimate Fighting Championship' videos stealing the attention...
Feeling very sorry for Tim right now, who finally left at 5:30am, and had a 9am meeting... Poor kid!
The final verdict: A top night all round! Same time next year boys???
LIVE APPEARANCE NEXT WEEK
July 26th 2000
Alright folks... listen up. If you EVER wanna go see the Cartel boys live, then THIS is your chance. The guys've been booked as special guest performers at the Pop Madness event in Dublin City next week. The show is a massive daytime gig, taking place in the Temple Bar Music Centre, Dublin, on Bank Holiday Monday, August 7th 2000. It's a four-hour pop
extravaganza, combining some of the top pop groups in Ireland, and the newest young bands on the scene. The Cartel lads are expected to perform a three or four song live set, and the way they're looking in rehearsal, they'll be on top form. Check back here later in the week for ticket and time details, as well as all the goss on the show.
DARRAGH AND TJ MAKE
SURPRISE TV APPEARANCE
July 18th 2000
Early-risers may have spotted Tim and Darragh on Irish national television network TV3 recently. The boys were on breakfast chat show Ireland AM to promote Hip-Hop and StreetDance as part of the nation-wide Millenium Day of Dance celebration. Dtwo4 – the kids’ hip-hop group that Tim and Darragh choreograph – gave a special performance on the show. Tim’s been teaching dance since 1998, and has choreography credits on everything from the Irish St.Patrick’s Day Parade to corporate UK fashion shows. He’s even been registered as a teacher with the Irish Department of Education – the first StreetDancer to ever gain such a qualification. Darragh’s been a proffessional dancer since he was sixteen, with a massive resume which includes club dancing, TV appearances, and a major movie sequence or two. Upon the launch of Cartel, both lads retired from active dance performance, and began developing as choreographers, where they now do stellar work to promote Hip-Hop, Funk, and StreetDance as legitimate genres of the art. They do, however, save all the best moves for the Cartel routines.
CARTEL FANS UNITED
July 11th 2000
It looks like Cartel Fans United - the bands' independant worldwide fanclub - has blagged a couple of exclusives on the boys... First of all, CFU Assistant Harriet Robson has flown into Dublin, and will be getting a very special interview with TJ and Darragh tonight... Watch out for it on the CFU International site (www.cfu-int.com) soon. The site also had exclusive pictures taken of the Telethon event back in May, (see picture above) so make sure you check those out too... You won't find them anywhere else! Big shout out to Harriet, Karina, and all the gang at CFU for their continued hard work and dedication. On behalf of the lads, thank you for being the first to believe.
CARTEL ROCK DTN SHOWCASE
June 28th 2000
Congratulations to Cartel (as well as their dancers, stylist, and crew) on a corker of a show last night in Dublin City. The boys were incredible, belting out a four song set (with a brilliant new version of 'In The Sunshine') to a clearly impressed crowd. Big thanks to Darren, Joan, Jim, Dave, and all the behind-the-scenes crew involved in making the Showcase a success. Cartel also want to send out a special well-done to 2Xtreme - an excellent five-piece group from Cork whom Cartel shared headline duties with last night. It was one of those nights when I felt really proud to be a part of this business. Any more low-key Cartel gigs like this (and I've been told there'll be a few) will be revealed EXCLUSIVELY here in Cartel News over the coming weeks.
SECRET CARTEL SHOWCASE
June 22nd 2000
Y'know, I'm really not supposed to be saying this... But I'm gonna do it anyway!!!! We've just got confirmation that Cartel will be performing a top-secret (not anymore) gig in Dublin next week! The show (which they felt was too secret to even tell their trusted Tour Manager!!!) has been set up to allow a couple of "key music-industry figures" the chance to see the band in action. And the good news is... you WILL be able to get tickets for the event ...although they're extremely limited. The event is the DTN Pop Showcase VI (the same event that originally gave Cartel their first break), held NEXT TUESDAY 27th June, at 8pm, in St.Anthony's Theatre, Merchants Quay, Dublin. The show allows young bands and singers a unique chance to perform on the same stage as established
Irish pop acts. Cartel will be surprise guests - they WILL NOT be advertised, which means that the only place announcing this is Cartel Online! Can you spell "E-X-C-L-U-S-I-V-E"!!! Now, the venue is very small - only about 200 seats- and half of those are already sold out, but don't worry... Around a hundred tickets WILL be reserved for sale at the door. Just make sure you show up early - it's a guarenteed sell-out!!! This could be your final chance to see Cartel in this intimate setting, so if you're in the area, be sure to check it out!
CARTEL'S SECRET DUBLIN SHOWCASE
June 20th 2000
Cartel have alledgedly scheduled a top-secret live performance in Dublin City next week, to allow a key music-industry figure to see the band in action. Details are sketchy at the moment, and being kept heavily under wraps, but the second we get more information, you'll be the first to know. None of the band were available for comment.
TWO DOWN, ONE TO GO
June 19th 2000
I tell you, you can't even blink around here!! Less than 24 hours after TJ's surprise image change (I saw it last night - it really suits him!), I've been told that Nicky too has done a u-turn, reverting back to his blonde, Beckham-esqe hairstyle of Cartel's early days. And with Darragh already booked in for later this week, it certainly looks like Cartel stylist Gillian Lee is taking her job very seriously!
NEW STYLIST, NEW LOOK
June 18th 2000
Cartel last night announced a new addition to the Cartel team - The band's new stylist, Gillian Lee. Gillian, who'se based in Peter Mark Studios in Dublin City, wasted no time getting straight to work on the boys. She's apparently already cut TJ's hair short, adding blonde highlights, with similar drastic changes in store for the rest of the band. Watch out for the profile of Gillian (as well as the rest of the behind-the-scenes crew) in a special Cartel Online feature on the Cartel Team, expected to be ready in mid-July.
MORE CARTEL - COMING SOON
June 10th 2000
The wait is almost over. Cartel have made very few public appearances since they re-formed last September. Instead, they focused on creating their own unique sound and style, as well as building an online fanbase, and attracting the interest and support of several kay music industry figures. With this work nearing completion, you can expect to start seeing a lot more of the Cartel boys starting this October, because (drum roll...) the band are beginning a full publicity blitz to finally secure the right record deal. And for those who just can't wait that long, expect to see some international press coverage of the lads over the summer (more news on that soon), as well as couple of low-key gigs around Ireland to "test the water", the details of which will be revealed exclusively here in Cartel Online News. I personally can't wait!
'HEAVEN IN YOUR ARMS'
TO DEBUT SOON
May 26th 2000
'Heaven In Your Arms' - the beautiful track written by Nicky way back in 1997, is to be added to Cartel's live set. The song was the one Nicky was singing when Tim and Darragh first saw him on television, and the one which convinced them that he was the right man for Cartel.
'Heaven In Your Arms' really shows off Nicky's talent and maturity as a song-writer. It was a massive crowd-pleaser for Nicky's old band, All2Gether (left), and we've already had many requests into this office to have Cartel perform it in their reportoire. Expect it to be added to the show by mid-August.
FREE GIFT FROM CARTEL
AND COCA COLA
May 24th 2000
Don't say we never give you anything... Cartel have teamed up with Coca Cola to bring you an incredible free gift offer. A handy Beverage Holder, which will be delivered to you IN UNDER A MINUTE!!! Yes... From the monent you order, it will take less than sixty seconds to be delivered to wherever you are in the world!!! Don't believe me? Just CLICK HERE to automatically order your free Coca Cola / Cartel Online Beverage Holder.
CARTEL FANS UNITED
May 15th 2000
Cartel Fans United International (CFU-Int) continues to go from strength to strength. The site,
which began as an unofficial tribute page for the band, has now become a massive independant website, with full support from the Cartel boys, and its' own URL -
Kudos to Karina Brandt - the creative genius behind CFU - for her tireless efforts to spread the Cartel word, and the incredible buzz she's created. You can join CFU for free - all you have to do is
CLICK HERE and see what the hype is all about.
BRYAN McFADDEN INTRODUCES CARTEL ONSTAGE
May 9th 2000
We've recieved quite a number of e-mails regarding Bryan's introduction of Cartel at Telethon 2000, so we've decided to publish a copy of the intro.
Hello everyone, this is Bryan from Westlife. I'm sorry I can't be there at Telethon 2000, I'm very disappointed. I'm actually in Israel at the moment, but while I'm here, I'd like to introduce you to some friends of mine. They're one of the brightest young talents to come onto the music scene in Ireland. They're good friends of mine, it's Tim, Darragh, and Nicky - the boy from Cork. Please put your hands together for the greatest band in Ireland...
The introduction from Bryan was recorded live from Tel Aviv, Israel, at 9:30am on the morning of Telethon, May 5th.
CARTEL AT TELETHON 2K
May 6th 2000
If Telethon proved just one thing, it showcased the fact that Cartel have fully developed their own sound and image, unlike anyone else. The live set began with a recorded introduction by Westlife member Bryan McFadden, where he referred to Cartel as "the greatest band in Ireland". The sexy Cartel Dancers began with an intro sequence, before the Cartel boys raced on stage to belt out their funky new track, 'In The Sunshine'. Then came the first full slow song ever to appear in a Cartel live set, 'I Don't Ever' - a beautiful BoyzIIMen-esque ballad which showed these boys can really cut a live vocal. The highlight was Nicky's breathtaking falsetto
climax, when the audience burst into applause as his incredible vocal range. To close the set, the lads brought the energy back up again for the song that has been a part of every Cartel show since Bryan was in the band, 'Hard To Get'. The guys looked great on stage, with a new image that's totally devoid of the European boyband influence, and the sound that clearly mixes Old Skool Funk and New Jack Swing with full-on Cartel Pop. It wasn't the best performance I've ever seen them give (They were quite shaken after a pathetic and childish attempt to sabotage their set only seconds before they went on stage), but it's pretty safe to say they still kicked ass in the way only Cartel can do.
BACKING DANCERS TO JOIN CARTEL
May 4th 2000
There'll definitely be something new to add a little spice to Cartel's set at Telethon 2K - the addition of some sexy female backing dancers to the show. Three professional dancers have been chosen, each to suit a specific Cartel member's image, and let me tell you - I've seen 'em in rehearsal - these girls are hot! Ursula Macken, aged 19, has been paired with Darragh because of her dark Latin-like features and sexy eyes; 22-year-old Rita Dempsey is a perfect match for Tim's All-American look; and the baby of the group, 18-year-old Gillian Brady, has the cute blonde look that makes her a natural partner for Nicky. And just you wait 'till you see what they're wearing!!! No pictures of the girls are available yet, but watch this space - These lovely ladies are too good to miss.
CARTEL TELETHON DETAILS CONFIRMED
April 10th 2000
Final confirmation of the Cartel gig at Telethon 2000 has arrived. The event will take place on Saturday May 6th 2000, at 12 noon in Vicar St. Theatre, Dublin. Doors open at 11:30am, with the show expected to go on until 3pm. There will be between nine and fifteen Irish Pop Groups performing, including the Cartel boys, and many other established Irish acts, as well as some of the best up-and-comers on the Dublin pop scene.
>>> More Cartel News
Tickets go on sale Monday April 17th, available from TicketMaster, HMV, and all usual outlets nationwide, priced at IR£8 per ticket. They will also be made available over the internet. Less than a thousand tickets will be available publicly, so early booking is strongly recommended, to avoid disappointment. Cartel, and all the other acts on the bill, are offering their services free of charge for the day, and all proceeds from the event will be contributed to People In Need - a leading Irish charity - for which the massive 24-hour Telethon broadcast raises money each year.