Aengus Presley belts it out to win SF Factor

EARWICKER has investigated some mighty strange phenomena over the years, but none quite as strange as the kind of outfit Sinn Féin TD Aengus Ó Snodaigh chooses to wear on Easter weekend.

Given the weekend that’s in it and its pre-eminence in the republican calendar you’d think that his chosen wardrobe would include a sober suit, an Easter lily and a green tie.

And if you were thinking belt, you’d say an ordinary one (or, at a push, a Sam Webber belt — one of the luminous ones for cycling of course!)

But a gold lamé belt? Aengus Ó Snodaigh. Up the yard with you! !Dahling, he would so not be able to carry it off! But it’s true. And that wasn’t all. He also paraded around with a gold medallion, a shiny jump suit, a bare chest, a pair of shades and a luxuriant black wig.

Yep, the king might be dead, but Mr Ó Snodaigh added himself to the growing list of politicians who have successfully gelled a complete lack of talent with an utter lack of shame or humility.

For following in the footsteps of Finian McGrath, Billy Kelleher, Dan Boyle, Frankie Feighan and Michael McCarthy, Mr Ó Snodaigh took to the boards to debut his Elvis impersonation.

And, by all accounts, you had to be there. It was part of a talent show based on the X Factor organised by Sinn Féin last weekend to raise funds for its Dublin election campaign. Its title was the unoriginal SF Factor (a smart alec would have punned the X part much better — like in the Semtex Factor) and its ‘stars’ included most of the SF candidates in the capital.

Our spy said that Mr Ó Snodaigh was “brutal”, but won on the basis of his extravagant outfit and the fact that it was held in his constituency. For his encore, he sang the Pink Floyd classic Another Brick in the Wall and even roped in local kids to sing the chorus.

Two of Mr Ó Snodaigh’s brothers, Colm and Rossa, are members of the traditional band, Kila. But on the basis of that performance, their political brother won’t be co-opted anytime soon.

The only two candidates who could actually sing were Joanne Spain (who sang 9 to 5) and the ubiquitous Mary Lou McDonald who blasted out the hip-swivelling La Bamba with great gusto.

And, surprise, surprise, there wasn’t an Irish Ways and Irish Laws or a Sean South to be heard all night.

Yep, things have moved on.

Well, we knew the peace process was for real when the Wolfe Tones decommissioned their instruments.

All we need as final proof is for Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin to rap his version of the Gil Scott-Heron classic, The Devolution Will Not Be Televised.

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