Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Vodafone Comedy Festival

RICK O'SHEA from 2FM blogging for Bewley's Hotels.

"My choice is this year’s Vodafone Comedy Festival in the Iveagh Gardens for a few reasons. I go to comedy far more than gigs these days and the festival is a brilliant excuse to spend a day (or two depending on your budget!) catching genuinely great acts one after another in a brilliant, brilliant setting. I have to be honest, I can weave off to the Dart at the end of the night as well which, for me, is a bonus. I’m too old for camping.
I was asked to maybe pick a few people I might be seeing as well but that’s impossible – you have everyone from people I’ve never heard of before to people I’ve seen many times like Neil Delamere, Dara O’Briain, David O’Doherty, Colin Murphy, Abie Philbin-Bowman. The fun is more in those I’ve never seen before…

My advice? Go early, soak up the ambiance at the bars and get a bite before you hi the tents. Book more than one show because, believe me, if you only go to one and love it, you’ll wish you could be going to more. Big stuff tends to book out early.
Keep an eye out for 2FM as well, we’re doing a bunch of live shows from there that weekend including mine.

My Top 5 tips for the Vodafone Comedy Festival:
1.    Go see someone you don’t know. Seriously, Get outside your
       comfort zone, you never know who you might end up loving!
2.    Bring sunscreen – it’s an outdoor festival in Ireland in the Summer, you’ll spend time out in the
       open having a beer or a glass of wine and eating in the glorious sunshine between acts. Be
3.    Bring wellies – it’s an outdoor festival in Ireland in the Summer, you’ll spend time out in the
       open having a beer or a glass of wine and eating in the pouring rain between acts. Be prepared.
4.    Bring snowshoes – it’s an…. Well you get the idea.
5.    Always *always* be in time for the support and the MC. Some of the best experiences I’ve had
       over the years have been before the main act hits the stage!"

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Christy Moore 2014

Christy Moore is an Irish institution. The Kildare man once named ‘Ireland’s Greatest Living Musician’ turns 70 next year, but there is absolutely no slowing him down.
This summer, he’s set for dates in Mayo, Cork, Kerry and Northern Ireland, but first up was the intimate settings of Dublin’s Iveagh Gardens.
For the uninitiated, The Iveagh Gardens is one of the capital’s most beautiful green areas.
Any Christy setlist is a surefire winner, but of course not all songs were created equal, so here’s our pick of the five ultimate tunes to listen out for at a CM gig.

1.    Ordinary Man
Probably the song most associated with the man, Ordinary Man was the title song from Christy’s 1985 album. Written by Peter Hames, the track tells the story of a factory worker who has lost his livelihood, and his struggle to survive as life moves on.

2.    Lisdoonvarna
An anthem for singles everywhere, and the craic in Clare! This ode to the infamous West Clare matchmaking festival is a summer anthem, and one that’s sure to get the party started. Of course, the fact that it’s easy to sing along to helps too…

3.    The Voyage
The song is Johnny Duhan's, but the legacy is Christy’s. Going by iTunes, it’s his most popular song, and legend has it that this one has been performed at over 1 million weddings worldwide. You might need a tissue for this one.

4.    Nancy Spain
Another song of longing, another beautiful lament. Barney Rush may have penned the track, but Christy’s voice gave it life.

5.    Ride On
Another title track, from another wonderful album. The Jimmy McCarthy penned track has been covered countless times since Christy’s 1984 release, but one of the most notable performances of recent years saw Christy join Coldplay on stage to close the Oxegen music festival in 2011.

Thank you to our amazing guest blogger, Michelle from


Friday, July 18, 2014

Longitude is here!

Guest Blogger: Louise Duffy from Today FM.

All across Ireland, in small villages and big towns, more and more festivals are popping up every year. You’ll see Big Tops and little yurts, food stands and great bands. And each little fiesta has its own unique charm, and its own unique gathering of enthusiastic festival goers. But the one I’m most excited about this summer, is Longitude. Held in Marlay Park for three days, with four stages, and a crazy collection of the hottest bands at the moment, it’s like a shuffle through my ipod playlist. And I can’t wait! I have been counting down the days until it kicks off, my timetable highlighted and my weekend planned with precision. I don’t want to miss anyone – but you always do! No matter how meticulously you plan, once you get on site, the festival takes over – the sights and sounds and smells, the jovial atmosphere take over, and it really doesn’t matter if you miss a band here or there, because, you’re at Longitude.

The line up this year is exceptional. On Friday, on the main stage, the one and only Ben Howard headlines. He is preceded by George Ezra and Hudson Taylor. Bastille and Bombay Bicycle Club follow them, either of which could headline themselves. It’s worth checking out the smaller stages, Bipolar Sunshine appear on Whelans 25 stage at 7pm, listen out for one of my favourite songs of the summer; Deckchairs on the Moon. On Saturday, I will be perched in front of the main stage from 3pm to midnight, and I’m not moving! The line up on Saturday is outrageous, and that’s why it sold out weeks ago. Hozier, Sam Smith, The 1975, Chvrches and Haim warm up the stage for Disclosure. It’s the perfect combination of indie, soul and electro pop, something for everyone on the main stage on Saturday. But as with all the best festivals, difficult choices must be made, and on the Heineken stage on Saturday evening, Cyril Hahn appears at the same time as Haim on the Main Stage, and my favourites Le Galaxie will be doing their thing, while brother duo Disclosure mix it on the main stage. I need to figure out teleportation before the weekend! Either that or get them all to perform together – Cyril Haim and Discalaxie. On Sunday, always the most mellow day of a weekend festival, the line up is just as impressive; the main stage sees We Cut Corners open the show, followed later in the evening by Rudimental, the man with the most ethereal voice you’ve ever heard, James Vincent McMorrow, and closing the show is Massive Attack – it’s worth buying a weekend ticket just to hear them perform Teardrop.

You’ll be well fed at Longitude this year, Gourmet Burger King, Saba, Wok N Roll, Hans Frankenfurter and Mak Slim will all have stands in Marlay Park. Heineken and Bacardi will also have tents in case you get thirsty! One slight downfall about Marlay Park seems to be the difficulty getting in and out. You’re advised to plan your travel arrangements well in advance, whether you’re getting a bus, a luas and a walk, or you’re carpooling, it’s best to be prepared, don’t rely on hailing a taxi outside the site. But the upside of Marlay Park – no camping! Set in a residential area, everyone needs to vacate the site after the last performance, so there aren’t any lairy ravers still knocking about in time for the first act the following day. Saturday tickets are now sold out, but you can still get tickets for Friday and Sunday, and with a line up like that, Longitude is definitely one of the top festivals of the summer. See you there!
Thank you Louise for your great blog!

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