Saturday 17 August 2019

My Money: 'My first car is now a glasshouse for tomatoes and vegetables'

Nicola Joyce

Nicola Joyce
Nicola Joyce

Nicola Joyce is one of the three singers with the Galway band The Whileaways, which is currently touring Ireland. The band will perform next at the Claremorris Folk Festival in Mayo on July 21, the Boyle Arts Festival in Roscommon on July 22, and in the Town Hall Theatre in Westport on August 24. Visit for more information.

What's the most important lesson about money which your career as a musician taught you?

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Not to worry about it. I'd have become a teacher if knowing where my next pay cheque was coming from was that important to me. In my experience, it always comes.

What's your favourite song about money?

Money by The Flying Lizards. It's cheeky and quirky, and reminds me of the movie Empire Records, where I first heard it. I adored that movie as a teenager.

The most expensive country you ever visited?

I once played at a festival in Norway. At the time, it seemed outrageous that we would pay over a tenner for a drink. We got used to it!

What's the most you've ever spent on musical equipment?

I've never really splashed out on musical equipment. My most precious instrument was a gift. It's a 1950s baritone ukulele, which is priceless to me.

What's your favourite Irish coin?

The old pound coin. I remember the pound changing from notes to coins.

Apart from property, what's the most expensive thing you have ever bought?

A car. But I do get good use out of them. My first car is still sitting in the back yard - it now serves as a glasshouse for tomatoes and vegetables.

What was your worst job?

I worked in a factory in Galway for a summer before college. I was trying to save for the year ahead and so I was also working in a pub at night. I'd end up joining in the music sessions there until all hours. I'd then have to spend the next day looking through a magnifying glass for stray fibres in a plastic package. I hated every long minute of it.

What was your biggest financial mistake?

Not starting to save earlier in life.

What was your best financial killing?

It might be the IR£137 I won for a pound bet in the Galway races a long time ago. I was in sixth class and bought a purple and green mountain bike with it. 

If you won the Euromillions, what would you do with the money?

A musician friend used to say he would pump a load of the money into promoting the band and not tell anyone he'd won the Lotto. Everyone would just think the band was flying it, so maybe I'd do that!

The best advice you ever got about money?

You can't take it with you. I like that idea - to just enjoy your money while you're able to.

iTunes or Spotify?

So much work goes into making an album, it's a pity not to be able to hold it in your hands. I like to see the artwork and read the liner notes. But I use Spotify too - it's great for discovering new music.

What was the last thing you bought online?

Car tax. I'm a bad online shopper. I like to wander, and browse and daydream while doing it.

Would you buy property now?

Yes. I'd like to buy an old house and renovate it. I have no interest in city living - there's still an odd gem to be found if you are willing to live among the fields and get your hands dirty.

Do you ever haggle?

It depends who is selling. I got a new mattress from a salesperson who called to my house. He wanted 600 quid. I gave him 200 and we both slept soundly.

What three things would you not be able to do without if you were tightening your belt?

I'm the world's worst at tightening belts. We love to eat out - and to have nice food and wine in the house. I'll never do without that - life is too short!

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