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Shortlist Announced for The Clancy Brothers Songwriting Competition 2015

Written by Admin. Posted in Industry News

Clancy Brothers songwriting logo NEWThe Shortlist has been announced for the 2015 Clancy Brothers Songwriting Competition.

The votes are in and the top three songs are…


‘Make it Stay’ by Avi McGourty (Templemore, County Tipperary)

‘The Truth is Not Your Own’ by Jamie Mulrooney (West Coast of Mayo)

‘Southern Fire’ by Katie Carpenter, Gary Burke and Liz Madden (Dublin)

With more than 120 entries from the four corners of Ireland, and as far away as Canada and Jamaica, this year’s Clancy Brothers Songwriting Competition was hotly contested.

Now the votes are in, the top three are on their way to Carrick-on-Suir to play a in the beautiful, atmospheric Nano Nagle Chapel on Sunday May 31st in what is sure to be one of the highlights of this year’s Clancy Brothers Festival of Music and Art. The winner of the competition will be revealed on the night.

Lisa Loughrey, last year’s winner, will headline with her group The Mariannes, an urban folk band with strong Irish folk, blues and alternative country roots, and songs forged with hard hitting lyrics, beautiful melodies and harmonies, and powerful arrangements. They recently released an EP with Lisa’s winning song, ‘Lost With All Hands’, as the title track. Lisa used her prize from last year to help towards the cost of producing the CD.

With cash prizes of €500 for the winner and €200 for each of the runners up sponsored by the Clancy Brothers Festival of Music and Art and IMRO, no one will leave empty handed. The winner also receives a voucher for CD duplication from Duplication Ireland worth €215 and all three gain premium services from Other competition sponsors are Music Matters Ireland and the Tudor Artisan Hub.

Doors open 7pm and tickets for the concert are €10 from the Tudor Artisan Hub, 42 Main Street, Carrick-on-Suir, Ph 051 640921.

For more see


Music in Media Award Nomination for IMRO Member Man in a Room

Written by Admin. Posted in Member News

MiRlogoIMRO member Man in a Room, aka songwriter and producer Steven Connolly, has just received a nod from Hollywood with a nomination in the Hollywood Music in Media Awards. His song, “Black & White”, taken from his latest album, The Alchemist’s Apprentice, has been selected as a nominee by the committee and HMMA voting academy in the “New Age / Ambient” category.

Hailing from Dublin and self-taught as a composer, producer and lyricist, the music of Man in a Room is influenced by various genres and life situations and circumstances. The album, filled with atmospheric soundscapes, was released in on Germany’s Lemongrass Music label.

Speaking of the nomination, Steven said: “I’ve been a Movie and Soundtrack fan all my life, so to be nominated at this event is a little bit special.” 

The awards are set to take place at the Fonda Theatre, Hollywood, LA on 19th November 2015. The awards honour leading composers of music for film, TV and other media, as well as independent composers and songwriters in various music genres.

You can find out more about Man in a Room at his website here


Debut EP from Limerick’s Randolf & The Crokers

Written by Admin. Posted in Member News

Randolf & The CrokersConversation Amongst the Ruins is a four track debut EP from Limerick band Randolf & the Crokers due for release on Friday 8th May. It follows on from their debut single Hangin, released in December last year.

The EP was recorded and mixed in the Lakelands Studios in Athlone by Mike O’Dowd and mastered in Limerick by Richard Dowling of Wav Mastering. It showcases a blend of folk/country/blues influences with ear-pricking harmonies which combine to produce a unique sound that has been carefully honed on the local gig circuit over the last few years.

The six piece band formed in 2011, released their debut single and video for Hangin in December 2014 and 2015 sees them release their first physical recording Conversation Amongst the Ruins.  The band has played locally in various Limerick venues over the years and has supported O Emperor, Mark Geary, Moscow Metro, John Blek & the Rats and most recently The Lost Brothers.

Conversations Amongst the Ruins will be available on digital release from Friday 8th May.

Tour Dates
08/05/2015 (Fri) – EP Launch, Dolans, Limerick

15/05/2015 (Fri) – Kenny’s, Lahinch

16/05/2015 (Sat) – Greyhound Bar, Kilkee

22/05/2015 (Fri) – Whelans , Dublin

23/05/2015 (Sat) – Monroes, Galway

For more follow Randolf & The Crokers on Facebook and Twitter.


Improvisation & Sound Art at Sonic Vigil 9 This Weekend

Written by Admin. Posted in Member News

Sonic VigilThe 9th annual Sonic Vigil, Ireland’s primary improvisation and sound art event, is set to take place on Saturday 2nd May in St Anne’s Church, Shandon, Cork City. This year’s special guest will be Christina Kubisch, the renowned multi-award winning German composer, recordist and installation artist. Kubisch’s work spans multiple media and includes an extraordinary number of performances at many of the world’s most significant festivals, recordings on many different labels, and diverse solo exhibitions. Kubisch appears at 6 pm.

Every year since 2007, Cork has played host to Ireland’s most significant free improvisation event. SONIC VIGIL brings together outstanding improvisers, sound artists and field recordists from Ireland and abroad in a multi-hour celebration of cutting-edge, radical sonic experimentation. 18 remarkable musicians are placed into a randomly-generated timetable, producing instant, unknowable and unexpected interactions: sounds of kaleidoscope beauty, teetering on a tantalising abyss of risk make for an immersive, mesmerising and ever-evolving experience.

Hein Schoer, musician and soundscaper and developer of the remarkable Sounding Museum – a trans-cultural exploration of the sonic identity of our world – appears at 4 pm.

The event takes place from 2pm to 8pm. Audience members are free to come and go as they please, and are invited in amongst the musicians, encouraging an exploratory approach to hearing and allowing an exceptional sense of intimacy that breaks down performer/audience divides. Unparalleled anywhere in Ireland or abroad, SONIC VIGIL displays an approach to performance and sound that is unique, extraordinary and inspiring.

Sonic Vigil is supported by Cork City Council, Gruenrekorder and the Goethe Institute. Sonic Vigil 9 is managed by Danny McCarthy, Mick O’Shea, Karen Power, Irene Murphy and John Godfrey.

Sonic Vigil 9 features Arif Ayab, David Bremner, Mikael Fernstrom, John Godfrey, Paul Hegarty, Anthony Kelly, Danny McCarthy, miXile, Harry Moore, Irene Murphy, Katie O’Looney, Mick O’Shea, Robin Parmar, Karen Power, Caroline Pugh, Nick Roth, David Stalling, Sean Taylor. 

Admission €5



Acoustic Tour for Bell X1 this Autumn

Written by Admin. Posted in Member News

Bell X1 Acoustic Tour 2015Following on from their recent addition to the Ed Sheeran Croke Park line-up this summer, Bell X1 have announced a very special acoustic tour this October. Tickets are now on sale from all the usual outlets.

Paul, Dave and Dom have been busy in the studio recording their 7th album.   This will be the follow up to 2013’s much acclaimed Chop Chop, which was their third Number 1, and their fourth consecutive album to be nominated for a Choice Music Prize Album of the Year.

Much of this tour finds them returning to some of Ireland’s most-cherished music venues with a few new special stops added in.

You can catch Bell X1 live this October in the following locations:

October Acoustic Tour Dates

Thu 1st – Riverbank Arts Centre, Newbridge

Fri 2nd – INEC Acoustic Room, Killarney

Sat 3rd – Cork Opera House, Cork

Sun 4th – Debarras, Clonakilty

Thu 8th – Town Hall Theatre, Galway

Fri 9th – Backstage Theatre, Longford

Sat 10th – Theatre Royale, Waterford

Thu 15th – Spirit Store, Dundalk

Fri 16th – Belfast (venue TBA)

Sat 17th – The Guildhall, Derry

Sun 18th – Balor Theatre, Ballybofey

Thu 22nd – Set Theatre, Kilkenny

Fri 23rd – Spiegeltent, Wexford

Sat 24th – Lime Tree Theatre, Limerick

Sun 25th – National Concert Hall, Dublin

Fri 30th – Glor Theatre, Ennis

Sat 31st – Hawk’s Well Theatre, Sligo


US Award Nomination for Liz Madden & Fionán De Barra

Written by Admin. Posted in Member News

Liz-Madden---LegacyIrish artists, LIZ MADDEN (Vocalist/Songwriter/Producer) and FIONAN DE BARRA (Guitarist/Producer) have just been nominated for this years New Mexico Music Awards.  Their arrangement and production of the original song “White Willow” written by Liz Madden and Katie Carpenter (of the Irish duo JEZZEBELLE), has been nominated in the Folk category. The awards take place on May 30th in Albuquerque, New Mexico. “White Willow” is taken from Madden’s new album LEGACY which has just been released on the Valley Entertainment label.

Liz and Katie are having great success with their songwriting collaboration, winning Best Irish Entry and Runner up in last years International Song of Peace contest and making the final of the 2014 Christie Hennessy Song Contest.


“All the Times” is the New Single from The Blood Red Mountain Band

Written by Admin. Posted in Member News

Blood Red Mountain Band_blue_web

Photo credit: Orla Keeshan Photography

The much loved Dublin Alt-country act, The Blood Red Mountain Band, have spent some time crafting their new sound, and are set to release ‘All The Times’, the first single from their forthcoming album, “Far from Daylight”.  Telling a tale of late night, drunken breakups; it’s a single rich in longing and heartache, in  triumphant strings and edgy vocals.

The three boys and two girls of The Blood Red Mountain Band sail a peculiar ship made from bits of Americana, Country, Soul and Rock.  Almost two years in the studio with producer Anthony Gibney -whose most recent work was Alien Envoy’s album ‘Loads’ (which got a 9/10 from HotPress)- they are finally ready to let their baby go out into the world.  “I’m really excited to get this single out, we’ve put a lot of heart into these new songs and I can’t wait for our fans to hear it” said Alison Byrne, vocalist and oboe player with the band.

The single will be available on iTunes from Thursday, 23th April.

To celebrate the launch, the band play in The Sugar Club this Thursday, 23th April 2015.

Tickets cost €12 on the door or can be purchased in advance from the Sugar Club.  Support on the night from Andy Earley and The Dublin City Rounders.

The full album ‘Far From Daylight’ will be available from Sept 1st 2015.

For more, check out the award winning Blood Reds on Facebook and YouTube.


Billy Treacy Live at Whelans Tonight for “Head Above Water” Launch

Written by Admin. Posted in Member News

Billy TreacyDublin singer-songwriter, Billy Treacy, releases his new album, “Head Above Water”, tonight at Whelans, Dublin. The album is a collection of modern day folk songs from Billy, who was first introduced to folk music growing up over a pub in Dublin’s City Centre.

The most recent single from the album, “Temple Bar”, was a tongue-in-cheek look at Dublin’s cultural quarter, while “Woe!”, his commentary on families struggling financially in Ireland today, became a viral hit on its release.

Self-released, the album has been a couple of years of hard work in the making. Billy describes it as both a personal soundtrack and a mix of protest songs, love songs and observations of life around him.

He will be performing with a 7-piece band in Whelans tonight.

Tickets €13.50 available from WAV or on the door. Doors at 8pm.

For more see


The Hard Ground’s Real Time Recording “Triptych” Out Now

Written by Admin. Posted in Member News

The Hard GroundAlternative indie-pop outfit ​The Hard Ground have released​ ​“Triptych”, their second album. Triptych is the culmination of a ​year’s worth of material that has seen the Cork based band release the album ​in a staggered manner since May last year. Triptych: 1 and 2,​ ​both digital EPs, were released in 2014. The final EP in the series​, Triptych: 3,​ ​the missing part of the puzzle, was released on April 10th, ​giving rise to the physical release of the full Triptych album, a culmination of all three EPs and a bonus track.

“Pucker” the band’s latest single, has been garnering ​much attention from both audience and industry, and recently received a nod of approval from UK music industry publication, “Record of the Day”. A dream-pop offering, the track has been featured across seventeen stations in Ireland over the past​ ​three​ ​weeks and has recently been playlisted on RTE Radio 1.

Seeking to approach the recording and release of an album in a new way, the band set about the project in early 2014 working with producer Christian Best in Monique Studios in Cork city. The method of release, inspired by the ‘triptych’ art concept, is a response to the challenges faced by recording artists in today’s music industry. The ‘album’ – the backbone of the record industry – has been rapidly replaced by an increasingly fragmented means of consumption.

Independently released, the constant writing, recording, and touring schedule has had a huge influence on the album. Undertaken as a real time recording project, the album documents the development of the band​’​s sound and songwriting over the last twelve months giving the listener an intimate insight in the creative process.

The Hard Ground​ ​tour Ireland over the next​ ​three ​months with dates in Dublin and Cork. For a full list of shows visit their website


Unsigned Only Entry Deadline Approaching

Written by Admin. Posted in Industry News

Unsigned OnlyUnsigned Only is a unique international music competition designed for solo artists, bands, and singers who are not signed to a major label record company. Unsigned Only is currently seeking outstanding, talented artists – newcomers or veterans. The competition is open to both original and cover songs in all categories except the newly-added Screen Shot category.

Judged by a roster of celebrity notables, prizes include merchandise plus $10,000 cash to the overall Grand Prize winner and $1,000 to the First Place winner in each category. Prizes will also be awarded to Second Place winners in each category. Additionally, the Grand Prize winner will receive one-on-one mentoring from a group of upper echelon music industry executives, ranging from label presidents to heads of A&R.

Due to the huge success of last year’s Screen Shot promotion, Unsigned Only has added Screen Shot as a category in the competition. Music placement in TV, film, video games and advertising has become an increasingly significant revenue source for musicians. Not only can it be a huge boost for an unsigned artist’s career in terms of increasing exposure to a mainstream audience, but it can also increase revenue through upfront money, license fees and performance royalties. All finalists in this category will have their music judged by a group of music execs who are specifically looking for music to place in various projects. Additionally, the First Place winner will have the opportunity to directly network with and get advice from a minimum of five of the Screen Shot judges. Last year’s Screen Shot winner, The Bicycle Mob, have already scored placements as a result of winning Screen Shot.

The deadline for entries to this year’s Unsigned Only is 30th April. For further information and entry details see