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Archive for July, 2017

New Season of Santa Rita Concerts Announced

Dubliners can once again experience magical evenings of fine wine and beautiful music in the heart of the city: the Santa Rita Concerts will run from September to March at The Little Museum of Dublin, with a mouth-watering programme of music in Dublin’s most charming museum. Curated by Ergodos, the series features some of the most eclectic programming in Dublin’s cultural landscape.

The 2017 / 2018 series begins in September 2017 with the lithe songscape of Laura Hyland’s Clang Sayne. In October, fiddle player Caoimhín Ó Raghallaigh (The Gloaming, This is How We Fly) explores a region where Irish traditional music begins to disintegrate. Canadian electronic music artist Sarah Davachi performs an all-enveloping solo set in November. We begin the new year with Rue (featuring members of Dublin folk group Lankum) in January, and we welcome West African kora master Seckou Keita in February. The season ends in March with the hypnotizing music of Estonian violinist-vocalist Maarja Nuut.   

The Santa Rita Concerts provide a unique, deeply immersive audience experience. Each evening begins at 7pm with a Santa Rita wine tasting, and a fireside interview with the artists. The performances take place at 8pm in the museum’s beautifully resonant downstairs gallery. The space is candlelit and the atmosphere highly intimate – a concentrated ritual shared by performer and audience.

The 2017/2018 Santa Rita Concerts are presented with the support of the Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon.

Book now

Shane Filan Announces New Single ‘Unbreakable’

Shane Filan announces the release of the heart warming track ‘Unbreakable’. The song is the first to be taken from his new album ‘Love Always’ which features a compilation of some all-time classic love ballads alongside new original songs. The track, written by Jamie Scott, who has worked with artists including One Direction and Rag’n’Bone Man, will be released on 22nd July 2017.

Shane has cemented his position as one of the UK & Ireland’s most popular male solo artists, following phenomenal success with Westlife – one of the world’s most successful bands of the last few decades – and he shows no signs of slowing down, “There’s nothing that make me happier than singing and being on stage” he says, “it’s something I am very proud of and it’s what I want to be doing for the rest of my life.

‘Unbreakable’ is out now.

Tour Dates: 


Ciara Sidine Releases ‘Unbroken Line’ and ‘Watching The Dark’

Dublin singer-songwriter Ciara Sidine’s sound has been described as ‘Americana with an unmistakeably Celtic feel to its poetic lyrics and confident vocals’ (UNCUT). Her much-anticipated new album ‘Unbroken Line’ (September 2017), follows on from her successful debut ‘Shadow Road Shining’, described in Hot Press as ‘Exquisitely beautiful . . . recommended from the highest heights.’ ‘Unbroken Line’, the album title track, is its first single release, along with ‘Watching the Dark’, with its hints of Billie Holiday and 1940s melody. Sidine’s uniquely arresting vocal kicks off the the sweetly melodious ‘Unbroken Line’, which draws inspiration from a Dylan classic, with its streetscape of old stores and faded signs, which are heard ‘blowing in the breeze’. In a spirit of hopeful yearning, Conor Brady’s easeful, low-key yet distinctive guitar stylings support the central vocal with a luscious warmth, creating a layered musical landscape that underpins the lyrical quest: to rediscover a connection to that which matters.

Says Sidine of her work, ‘It’s very easy to buy into an idea of brokenness in the world, because there is plenty of evidence for it. It can be easy to forget that there is much to be celebrated, even amidst turmoil. “Unbroken Line” came out of my own efforts to find a sustaining connection in difficult times – for me, it came through music. There is a line of song that reaches into the past and will extend into the future, long after we’re gone. Going back to the source, in this case the musical roots that inspire me, I find there a sense that, whatever our individual journeys, we are all walking “towards the borders of the night”, more together than we are apart. “Watching the Dark” is a trip down melody lane, a song that was fun to write and is a joy to sing.

Co-produced by Sidine and Conor Brady, the cream of Irish musicians feature on the recording including Conor Brady (Toots and the Maytals, Terence Trent D’Arby and George Martin), Robbie Malone (David Gray), Dave Hingerty (The Frames/Swell Season), Justin Carroll (Van Morrison) and revered Irish blues and country artist NC Lawlor. Sidine’s singing has drawn comparisons to Maria McKee, Alison Krauss and Gillian Welch but her style is very much her own and ‘Unbroken Line’ is a remarkable showcase of this.

Album launch The Sugar Club, Thursday 21 September:


Twitter: @ciarasidine


Registration Open for 14th Annual IAMAs

Registration is now open for the 14th Annual IAMA (International Acoustic Music Awards), this is great opportunity for music artists everywhere. IAMA is the preeminent awards for musicians, promotes excellence in acoustic music performance and artistry. Acoustic artists in various genres can gain exciting radio and web exposure through this competition. Participating sponsors include Acoustic Cafe and Sirius XM Satellite Radio. Music artists stand a chance to win awards in eight different categories: Best Male Artist, Best Female Artist, Best Group/Duo Folk, Americana/Roots/AAA, Instrumental, Open (any musical style or genre), Bluegrass/Country, etc. There will also be an Overall Grand Prize winner awarded to the top winner worth over US$11,000, which includes radio promotion to over 250 radio stations in US and Canada.

IAMA is sponsored by: D’Addario Strings, New Music Weekly, Loggins Promotion, Airplay Access, Sirius XM Radio, Acoustic Café Radio Show, MixButton,, Kari Estrin Management & Consulting, and

In its 14th year, IAMA has a proven track record of winners going on to get signed and hit the Billboard Charts. Meghan Trainor was discovered by IAMA seven years ago and is now a global superstar with #1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 Charts with “All About That Bass” (#1 for 9 weeks) and #1 on The Billboard 200 Charts with her debut album “Title”, won for a Grammy award for Best New Artist in 2016. The 2nd Annual IAMA winner Zane Williams’s winning song was recorded by country music star Jason Michael Carroll, that song hit #14 on Billboard Country Charts and #99 on Billboard Hot 100 Charts. Jeff Gutt, a finalist at the 9th Annual IAMA was a runner-up on X-Factor USA. Charlie Dore (known for her #1 hit “Pilot of the Airwaves”) was the top winner in 2008.

Danish Singer/Songwriter Tim Schou (see pictured) won top honors at the past year’s 13th Annual IAMA (International Acoustic Music Awards). He has been signed to Sony/ATV Music Publishing. He is the first from Denmark to ever win at IAMA. He was a member of “A Friend in London”, a Danish pop rock and rock band that represented Denmark in the Eurovision Song Contest 2011. He won the Overall Grand Prize as well as the Best Male Artist at the 13th Annual IAMA.

Other notable winners include Bertie Higgins & Bellamy Brothers, who won the Best Folk Category. Bertie Higgins is known for his #1 hit “Key Largo” and Top 10 hit “Just Another Day in Paradise”. Bellamy Brothers are known for their eleven #1 hits “Let Your Love Flow”, “If I Said You Had a Beautiful Body Would You Hold It Against Me”, “Too Much Is Not Enough” and many more.

NEeMA, featuring Emmylou Harris won the runner-up award of the Folk category. NEeMA is a folk singer from Canada. Folk legend Emmylou Harris has five #1 hits and counting.

Grace VanderWaal, America’s Got Talent’s last year’s top winner is a finalist in the Best Female Category. Her debut album hit #9 on the Billboard 200 albums chart. At 12 years old, she is the youngest finalist in the history of IAMA so far.

Marty Cintron, from the award winning group “No Mercy” is a finalist in the Best Male Artist Category. No Mercy is known for their #1 hit song “Where Do You Go”.

The deadline to enter is November 10th. For more information, go to:

Elephant Releases ‘Mirrors’

Elephant, the musical vehicle of Dundalk based multi-instrumentalist Shane Clarke releases a new track Mirrors on 1st August 2017.

Mirrors is a song about looking back. It’s about pining for your youth; mourning its mistakes and in turn, trying to recall just when it was that you became so cynical. Do you remember when every decision was vital and every misstep was a tragedy? And what’s more tragic than a broken heart.

“I have been writing songs about that feeling for 10 years. I have never written a song like this before though. At last years Electric Picnic, euphoric from living out the dream of playing the Body & Soul mainstage (probably euphoric for a number of reasons) I was led up to the front of the big hill to witness a band who I always enjoyed but never put much time into. LCD Soundsystem. Needless to say, they blew me away and I left the hill saying to myself; …I want to write a dance song.”

Elephant has rightly garnered much praise on the live front with his earnest vocal delivery and unique lyrical style capturing audiences and securing him performances with Martha Wainwright, Alexis Taylor, Lisa Hannigan, most of the country’s top festivals including Electric Picnic, Indiependence and Body & Soul and return trips to the Other Voices Music Trail in Dingle.

Having made a folk album the first time round with ‘HyperGiant’(2015), Elephant sheds his skin and moves on towards a new prowess of sound on his new album (Title TBC) set to be released in the autumn of 2017.

Heavily influenced by two of his favourite artists who have recently passed, David Bowie and Prince, it is his personal dedication to them, synth bells and saxophones in toll. If ‘HyperGiant’ was a coming of age folk album then this new album is his “breakup record”. A departure from the quiet vistas of the acoustic and entering a busier, sweatier suburb full of wannabe actors and sweatband solos.

Elephant, has three live variations; playing the same set but with different musical and vocal arrangements, making for intriguing live shows. Elephant may be a soloist looping effected guitars and vocals to create lush, layered music. A duo, offering intimate acoustic guitar, piano and synthesizer, tied with colourful melody and harmonies. Or the newest venture, Elephant as a full band. The full band line-up includes Paul Finn, Paul Mallon and Paul Carolan of The Flaws and Shane O Hanrahan of Norabelle. Songs wander from an instantaneous summery folk pop reminiscent of Badly Drawn Boy and Elliot Smith, to more mature meandering pieces with a deliberate deconstructed nature, akin to say…Broken Social Scene, Justin Vernon or Joanna Newsom.

Upcoming gigs:

July 28th – Louth, Dundalk Museum
Aug 5th – Louth, Dundalk, Arcadian Field Festival 
Aug 12th – Monaghan, Carrick Arts Festival


APELLA, Almost Ghosts & Tebi Rex announced as IMRO acts at the ‘Play the Picnic Stage’ at Electric Picnic 17

Festival Republic, in its on-going support of local Irish music is introducing a new stage to Electric Picnic, 1-3rd September 2017. The “Play the Picnic” stage is the newest addition to the ever growing festival. The stage is dedicated to bringing the best in local home grown Irish acts to the forefront of Irish music. The line-up is programmed by some of the key players in the Irish music scene, IMRO (Irish Music Rights Organisation) RTÉ2FM, RTÉ 2XM’s King Kong Radio, Abner Browns, Keiron Black and Music Maker. The charity partner this year is the Jack and Jill Foundation.

FRIDAY night will be curated by the King Kong Radio show on RTE 2xm. The KKR has been broadcasting for the past 8 years. It brings the newest in Irish music, fusing the radio show with interesting and curious interviews and special editions all based around what is happening in Irish music. The show will be hosted by Keiron Black, the voice behind the ever popular radio show. The Friday night will be a mixed tape of some of the coolest up and coming acts around : Heroes in Hiding, Munky, Roisin El Cherif, Hatchlings, Chancer, Cranky Face, Kevyn and APELLA.

SATURDAY will be hosted and curated by Abner Browns. Dave Judge and his crew have put together some of the biggest names in music onto one stage, for one day/night only! Acts such as Roisin O will bring a new wave of authenticity to Irish music. Abner Brown’s barber shop was nominated as one of the best venues in Ireland by the IMRO venue awards. It is quirky, cool and just enough to the left, it always feels right. The line-up includes: Roisin O, Chasing Abbey , Ivy Nations, Brave Giant, Military Road,Wolff, David Keenan, Marcas Carcas & the Trail Gang, The Skatuesques, Curtis Walsh and Almost Ghosts.

Search Party Animal Release “Enemies”

Irish band Search Party Animal release their new single, “Enemies” on July 21st 2017. The young band (an average age of 19), create a sound which transcends the sum of its parts. They are fronted by Dundrum native Adam Redmond, a multi instrumentalist and principal songwriter for the band. Search Party Animal have been playing together from the age of 14 and are becoming known for their energetic live shows.

The track, “Enemies” brings to mind early Foals, Django Django, and references the underground Irish post rock scene that the band were immersed in. The track was produced by the band and Vin McCreith (The Cast of Cheers, All Tvvins, Adebisi Shank) and mastered by Robin Schmidt (Two Door Cinema Club, The 1975).

The outfits previous single, ‘Evergreen’, received its premiere on Phil Taggart’s show on BBC Radio 1.

Search Party Animal release their new single “Enemies” via Faction Records, home of James Vincent McMorrow, Jape and Pleasure Beach.

With a debut headline show Upstairs at Whelan’s on August 25th, and a busy festival season to follow soon, there is much more to come from this exciting young five piece.

Penrose Share Video for “Let’s Go Out”

Irish Indie-Pop five piece Penrose, with front man Darragh McGrane at the helm, have just releases the video for their latest single “Let’s Go Out”.

Described as ‘a solid Indie Pop band with catchy uplifting indie songs and anthems that have “attitude” and stick in your head’, their new single doesn’t fall off the mark. Mixing the ease & harmonies of The Beatles / ELO, the snarling vocals of Richard Ashcroft and the rhythmic acoustic guitars of great Brit Pop, Penrose are a truly powerful force…live and on record.

The band successfully unveiled their debut EP “Live for the Dream” which charted at NO.3 in the Irish charts to a sell out house of fans & media. Followed up by a critically acclaimed single ‘MELODY’ which charted at No. 10 in the Irish charts and was picked up by all Irish national radio stations such as Today FM, FM104 and RTE, with TV appearances to on RTE’s TwoTube, the band then followed this up with yet another sell out show to their home fans in Dublin’s Academy 2 venue. Penrose were invited to the UK by one of the industries most illuminated music managers Alan McGee – to play gigs as part of the ‘Musicians against Homelessness campaign’. The band supported one of their main influences Aslan, as part of the ‘Made in Dublin’ Revisited gigs in Vicar Street last December. With a brand new single on the horizon and s string of Summer Festival dates, it looks to be an exciting time for the band.

The band consists of Caolan Fitzsimons (rhythm guitar), Mark Bolger (bass), Benji Hayes (Keys) and drummer Donal Bowens complementing McGrane’s lead vocals and lead guitar.

Maria Doyle Kennedy to Host Two Concerts at Hook Lighthouse

Maria Doyle Kennedy, one of Ireland’s most gifted and versatile female artists will host two very special evening concerts at the world’s oldest intact operational lighthouse – Hook Lighthouse on August 25th and 26th.

Maria Doyle Kennedy has forged a name and held her own in diverse arenas from film and TV to her career as a singer-songwriter. She has spent the best part of 20 years performing live all over the world to audiences ranging from the many thousands who have enjoyed her show at festivals including Glastonbury, Oxegen, Cambridge Folk Festival to the more intimate theatre concerts. She has hosted sell out shows at Hook Liughthouse in the past and returns later this month to host two more magical perfomances in the 800 year old Lighthouse Tower. A limited number of tickets to this fully seated event are on sale at €30. Maria will perform many of her fans favourite songs along with some new songs from her upcoming album, which is set to be launched later this year.

This event will take place as part of one of the many happenings at Hook Lighthouse for National Heritage Week, which takes place from August 19th to 27th; enjoy a combination of events from Historial tours, Pirate Fun, Musical evenings and a Whale and Dolphin Group Day at the Lighthouse located on the Hook Peninsula in County Wexford.

Visit the the iconic landmark during Heritage Week as the tourguides along with a little help from the holograms of St. Dubhan and William Marshal recount its stories dating back some 800 years.

On Sunday August 20th a special Family Fun day will be on offer at the tower with free fun games taking place on the Lighthouse lawns. On Saturday August 26th the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group will host an information day at the Lighthouse, the group will tell visitors how best to spot the Minke and Humpback Whales which are frequently seen off the Peninsula, along with details on Dolphins, Porpoises, Seals and other sealife.

And to taking the Summer season to a close for the pesky Pirates on the Peninsula, they will be given free reign of the Lighthouse for just one day. Don’t miss the calamity on Sunday, August 27th as the Pirate cronies host their final Pirate Fling for the summer, all of their usual antics and mischief will be par for the course plus they plan to take the Lighthouse Manager to ransom and demand that ‘kids go free on tours all day’ on August 27th.

Hook Lighthouse is the oldest operational Ligthouse in the world. Hook Head Lighthouse has shone a protective beam for passing sailors for 800 years and remarkably, the original structure is still intact. This Irish lighthouse sits at the top of breathtaking Hook Head, rich in history, character and natural beauty. The Lighthouse is located in the south-western corner of county Wexford.

For further details on these heritage week events and tickets see

Great White Lies Share “Sunday Shapes”

Sonically speaking Regina Spektor has dinner with Amy Winehouse and they all grab a cuppa with Frank Zappa; Great White Lies sound resides in the alley on the way back. Choral music, jazz, and funky soul permeate through their inventive sound, peppered with surreal imagery.

Sunday Shapes’ is the first single release from Great White Lies series of recent recordings with producer Comrade Hat. Following a busy period touring Ireland, Canada & Los Angeles the jazz/pop sextet are set to release new music to a growing international audience.

‘Sunday Shapes’ brings together elements of what the group have become known for. Hooky bass lines growl under dynamic vocals glittered with bursts of harmonies, powerful keys, brass and thumping percussion. These very elements have brought them comparisons to Prince and Regina Spektor.

Since the release of their self-titled debut ep they have performed live on RTE 1, Bloom in Phoenix Park, Stendhal Festival, won VAI song of the year and music featured in BBC NI documentary ‘Love In A Day’.

“Blast of summer sunshine” – GoldenPlec

Lovely stuff…Great energy and inventiveness” The Late Show, BBC Radio Ulster

Absolutely brilliant” – Darren Cleary, In Colour, 2XM

Tour dates:

15/07 Derry, The Alley Theatre, Strabane w/Lauren Bird

27/07 Dublin, The Workman’s Club, w/ The Vulture Collective

29/07 Donegal, Shindig Nights, Letterkenny

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