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O Emperor win the RTÉ Choice Music Prize Irish Album of the Year 2018

O Emperor have been announced as the winner of the RTÉ Choice Music Prize Irish Album of the Year 2018 for the album Jason (self released). The judging panel, made up of Irish music media professionals, deliberated at length earlier tonight before choosing the winning album.

Chairman of the judging panel Tony Clayton-Lea commented “Once again 2018 was a terrific year for the quality of Irish albums released, and the judging process reflected this.  Of all the years that I have been chairman of the judging panel, this year was the closest in terms of winner and runner up, with Kojaque’s album Deli Daydreams pipped at the post by O Emperor.”

O Emperor received a cheque for €10,000, a prize which has been provided by the Irish Music Rights Organisation (IMRO) and the Irish Recorded Music Association (IRMA) – as well as a specially-commissioned award.

The winner of the RTÉ Choice Music Prize Irish Song of the Year was also announced and Picture This won the prize for their song “One Drink”. Decided by the public via the RTÉ and Choice Music Prize websites, fans were given the chance to get behind their favourite song.

The sold-out event in Vicar Street was hosted by RTÉ 2FM’s Eoghan McDermott and was broadcast live on the station on a specially-extended Louise McSharry show.

RTÉ2 will broadcast a one-hour TV highlights programme of the RTÉ Choice Music Prize featuring performances from the acts and interviews by Bláthnaid Treacy on Sunday March 17th at 11.15pm.

Earlier during the day, the “Conversations” conference took place at IMRO, which was attended by international and Irish industry.

IMRO Live Music Venue of the Year Awards Winners

Tonight, Tuesday 26th February,’s Paddy McKenna hosted the always highly anticipated IMRO Live Music Venue of the Year Awards, now in its eleventh year, at the Irish Music Rights Organisation Headquarters in Dublin.

The award for National Live Music Venue of the Year 2018 (via public vote) went to The Sugar Club, Dublin.

Of the annual awards voted by over 12,500 IMRO members Victor Finn, IMRO Chief Executive said “We’re privileged in Ireland to have such a vibrant and eclectic live music scene, which is the backbone of the music industry as a whole. We feel it is vital to acknowledge the venues and festivals who support live music from a musician’s first performance right through to internationally known headline artists on main stages. It is these venues and festivals across the country that allow music creators to continue making music and bring it to new audiences.”

Other winners in the regional categories include

Dublin – The Sugar Club, Dublin

Rest of Leinster –  The Spirit Store, Dundalk, Co. Louth

Connacht – Monroe’s, Galway

Munster – Live at St Luke’s,  Cork

Ulster –  An Grianán Theatre, Letterkenny, Co. Donegal

Also nabbing accolades for IMRO Live Music Festival of the Year and IMRO Small Live Music Festival 2018 were All Together Now and Wexford Spiegeltent Festival respectively.

Olympia Theatre, Dublin picked up the award for IMRO Tech Crew of the Year.

The IMRO Outstanding Contribution to Live Music accolade was awarded this year to Joe Clarke, co-founder of CWB, a music focused management and production company with offices in Dublin and a residential production studio in Co. Tipperary. With a background in venue ownership and management, together with partners Paul Webb and Paul Boland he opened CWB in 2008 with the Rubberbandits being their first management client. Following their worldwide success, the company expanded adding The Strypes and Le Galaxie to their roster. Currently, CWB manages Bitch Falcon, The Blizzards, Mark Mc Cabe, RSAG, Jack O’Rourke, Kormac, Stomptown Brass, Maud in Cahoots, Jerry Fish, Montauk Hotel, Thumper, Paddy Dennehy and more.

Performances on the night came from Pillow QueensMoncrieff and Inhaler.

Hot Press Editor Niall Stokes also gave special commendations, presenting awards to Mike the Pies, Listowel Hot Press Live Venue of the Year for 2018, Live at St. Luke’s, Cork and The Chasin’ Bull, Bundoran.

He said: “This is a hugely optimistic moment for Irish music. There is an extraordinary talent pool here. A growing number of artists and bands are releasing music of real heft. And as a result Irish artists are achieving significant successes beyond these shores in greater numbers than ever before. But it is still extremely difficult for musicians to earn a living. Which is why a vibrant live music scene is so important.

Hot Press is really proud to be part of the IMRO Live Music Venue Awards. The purpose of the awards is to celebrate the contribution made by the people who run venues and book shows all over Ireland. Over the past few years, we have seen a resurgence in live gigs – which is reflected in the venues that Hot Press is honouring tonight. It is a deep love of music – as well as an entrepreneurial spirit and a sense of fun – which inspires a great venue like Mike The Pies in Listowel. And the same is true, in different ways, of the people behind Live at St. Luke’s in Cork and The Chasin’ Bull in Bundoran. Long may they – and venues like them – continue to thrive.”

Live music venues and festivals play a vital role in the music industry in Ireland, giving international and homegrown artists a platform to engage with fans and build new audiences. They also play a central role in urban and rural communities across the country, providing a social gathering space for varied audiences, and contributing hugely to the domestic economy.

IMRO Live Music Venue of the Year 2018 Winners

IMRO National Live Venue of the Year 2018 – The Sugar Club, Dublin

IMRO Dublin Live Music Venue of the Year 2018 – The Sugar Club, Dublin  

IMRO Rest of Leinster Live Music Venue of the Year 2018 – The Spirit Store, Dundalk, Co. Louth

IMRO Connacht Live Music Venue of the Year 2018 – Monroe’s, Galway

IMRO Munster Live Music Venue of the Year 2018 – Live at St Luke’s, Cork

IMRO Ulster Live Music Venue of the Year 2018 – An Grianán Theatre, Letterkenny, Co. Donegal

IMRO Music Festival of the Year 2018 – All Together Now

IMRO Small Music Festival of the Year 2018 – Wexford Spiegeltent Festival

IMRO Tech Crew of the Year Award 2018 – Olympia Theatre, Dublin

Hot Press Live Venue of the Year for 2018 – Mike the Pies, Listowel with special Hot Press commendations going to Live at St Luke’s, Cork and The Chasin’ Bull, Bundoran.

Web: / Facebook: IMRO.Ireland / Twitter: @IMROIreland

Music Cork Returns To Leeside For Third Year of International Music Industry Debate

IMRO sponsored Music Cork returns to Leeside for its third year this May 1 -3 bringing another impressive programme featuring music industry professionals, informative discussion panels and great live music throughout Cork city. Previous years have yielded some long-standing industry partnerships and working relationships, fostered in an informal and enlightening environment.

Delegates to Music Cork 2019 will have the opportunity to meet and network with music industry figures from Ireland and abroad, hear about and discuss industry trends and innovations, benefit from years of experience from myriad areas of the business while enjoying a relaxed three days around the vibrant streets of Cork city.

Among the speakers announced so far for May’s three-day event are Lucy Dickins, an agent at ITB (Mumford & Sons, Adele, James Blake), James Whitting, an agent at Coda, (Imagine Dragons, Ellie Goulding, Robyn & Maggie Rogers), Sarah Desmond, Senior Vice President of Marketing & Partnerships at Universal Music Group, Cesar Andion, PR & Talent at Live Nation Spain and Catherine Grieves, a Music Supervisor who has worked on shows for HBO, Channel 4 and Netflix. Also confirmed for Music Cork 2019 are Danny O’Reilly (The Coronas), Emma Zillman (Booker Kendall Calling & Blue Dot festivals), Zach Hyde (Agent UTA LA), Lisa Lester (Lawyer LA), Mark Gordon (Score Draw Music), Louize Carroll (Composer / The Blizzards), Joe Dougan (Promoter Shine Belfast), Brian Hetherman (Curve Music / Cerberus Consulting Canada).

Complimenting the discussion and debate will be a large showcase gig at the newly revamped Cyprus Avenue on Wednesday May 1 and a carefully curated music trail on Thursday May 2 featuring some of the best breaking Irish music. Early Bird delegate passes are now available from and for the special price of €109, ensure that the delegate has:

▪ A place on the Networking Pub Crawls where speakers and delegates mix (Wednesday)
▪ Access to the Opening Night Showcase and private Delegates and Speakers Lounge (Wednesday)
▪ Access to all panels, discussions and keynotes (Thursday) (All day tea & coffee plus a buffet lunch)
▪ Guaranteed access to all of Thursday Night Showcase gigs
▪ Access to the After Party (Thursday)
▪ Access to the Bacon & Bloody Mary Networking Brunch (Friday)

Music Cork 2019 again returns to The Clayton Hotel as the hub of the three-day symposium, with the city centre hotel offering easy access to the rest of the programmed events throughout the city. Shane Dunne, one of the Music Cork organisers, said: “We are delighted to be able to do this again in Cork. The feedback over the last few years from the delegates and showcasing acts has been hugely positive, people are seeing a real benefit out of coming to Music Cork. We have to thank our sponsors, without whom we wouldn’t be able to run Music Cork so affordably and offering so much over the three days for attendees.”

Mind YourSelf: Mental Health and Music

Date: 25.05.2019
Location: The Tara Building, 11-15 Tara Street, Dublin 2
DOORS: 3:30 PM / 6:30 PM

TICKETS: €5 – €10* @

Workshop . Panel Discussion . Live Performance . Art . Zines

On Saturday May 25th, SelfMade will run a two-part event, sponsored by IMRO, looking at mental health in the Irish music scene and in particular the challenges affecting developing musicians in their professional and personal lives. There has been a huge step-up in the level of conversation on mental health in recent years and we’re proud to use our next event to encourage conversation, break the stigma, and facilitate a route to a healthier music industry.

Featuring: Maria Kelly, Paddy Hanna, Caoimhe Barry (Wyvern Lingo), Michael Pope (Le Galaxie)

Panel Hosted by Louise Bruton & Workshop led by Aoife Ruth

4pmAfternoon Workshop: Working with Your Inner Critic
The two-part event will start with an interactive workshop focusing on how musicians can work with their inner critic – the internal voice that can often hold us back, tell us we’re not good enough, or make us anxious about putting ourselves out there. Instead of silencing or fighting off the inner critic, this workshop will seek to get to know it by exploring the origins of self-criticism and how it impacts musicians and creatives in their life and work. The workshop will be led by psychotherapist, musician, researcher and BIMM lecturer, Aoife Ruth, in collaboration with Wyvern Lingo’s Caoimhe Barry.

7pm – Evening Session: Mind YourSelf Panel and Performances
Our evening panel features a line-up of Irish artists who have all used their creative work and social platforms to highlight career-related mental health and anxiety, and have been open about the more challenging and hands-on aspects of developing a music career. The Mind YourSelf panel will look at the factors affecting the mental health of artists and how these manifest, as well as the importance of open discussion and self-care, access to support (as well as ways artists can support each other), and the need for positive cultural and industry change. Discussion and Q&A will be led by music journalist and activist, Louise Bruton, and the panel will be opened and closed with live performances.

Performance Times TBC

SelfMade is a platform to explore the unseen sides of a music career through discussion, performance, art and zines. With a strong focus on women in music, our goal is to celebrate the work of DIY musicians and to create a supportive space to explore the realities of getting a music project or career off the ground. SelfMade is organised independently by artist, Joanna Bain, and musician/label co-founder Julie Hawk (HAVVK) in collaboration with a collective of Irish musicians. Sponsored by: IMRO

Creativity Valued as Trilogue reaches Agreement on Copyright

Dublin, February 14 2019 – The Irish Music Rights Organisation (IMRO), a national representative organisation for the Irish music industry, today welcomed the outcome of copyright Trilogue negotiations, which concluded last evening.

Victor Finn, CEO of IMRO said, This is a hugely welcome result for the valuing of creativity across Europe. Creators including our over 12,000 IMRO members have been waiting for this outcome, a strong signal from our policy-makers that the system, in recognising opportunities with technology, at the same time values culture, values creative work, and values creators. While the text requires final review, we hope that we will now move towards its speedy adoption.

Eleanor McEvoy, Chair, IMRO said, “Creativity matters. Culture matters. Music matters. The political system agrees. This agreement sends a message across Europe that as we advance technologically, as we build our economies and societies together, creativity is at the heart. We are thankful to policy-makers who have been standing up for creativity in the negotiations so far, and we look forward to engaging further as the process is finalised.”

Job Vacancies @ IMRO

IMRO – Irish Music Rights Organisation, is a national organisation that administers the performing right in copyright music in Ireland on behalf of its members – songwriters, composers and music publishers – and on behalf of the members of the international overseas societies that are affiliated to it. IMRO’s function is to collect and distribute royalties arising from the public performance of copyright works and as of from the 1st January 2016 to licence and collect royalties on behalf of PPI – Phonographic Performance Ireland, as their agent.

Job Title: Licensing Administrator – Dual Music Licence

Job Description
We are seeking a dynamic, experienced and driven individual to join our team to manage the process of creating, sending and obtaining signed dual licenses for all existing customers assigned to them. They will be required to call licensees, create licenses, handle objections, manage adjustments and to follow up until they obtain a signed licence and where possible a signed direct debit mandate or agree a payment plan.

Duties and responsibilities:
• Achievement of dual licensing targets, to include numbers of premises licensed in accordance with set down procedures and published tariffs.
• Encouraging customer to pay promptly for their music use with particular emphasis on them signing a direct debit to achieve cash collection targets.
• Identification of premises where copyright infringement action is required i.e. on their refusal to sign the dual licence and to pay.
• Timely resolution of any queries from customers regarding their new dual licence and their performance particulars.
• Passing of customers to the field team in order to deal with queries that cannot be handled from the office or can be handled easier in the field.
• Use of IMRO’s CRM system to log activity and the production of new licenses.
• Daily submission of activity reports to include number of calls attempted, completed and licenses redone and sent to the National Licensing Sales Manager and Team Leader.
• Undertaking such other duties as may be assigned by management from time to time, including licensing and queries in other areas.

Minimum Requirements:
• 2 years Telesales, Customer Service or Call Centre experience in a high-volume target orientated cold calling environment.
• An ability to work to the highest level of quality and have outstanding attention to detail.
• Strong communication skills.
• Excellent MS Office skills – knowledge of Microsoft Dynamics CRM an advantage.
• Strong written and spoken English.
• Proven ability to engage at Executive/Director level.
• Strong planning and organisational skills. Desirable:
• Confident, tenacious and enthusiastic self-starter who will embrace the challenges of this role.
• A business qualification We are an equal-opportunity employer and welcome all candidate applications who meet the minimum qualifications listed above.

1-year fixed term contract Benefits: 25 days annual leave
Payment: Basic €25K, €5K Annual KPI Bonus. Start: Immediate

Please send a CV and cover letter to by 5pm Friday 1st February

Title: Licensing Support Executive – Monitoring

Job Description
We are seeking a dynamic, experienced and driven individual to join our team to assist the licensing, credit control and legal teams in monitoring, evidence gathering and general premises checks so we can ensure premises are licensed correctly, are still open and to obtain evidence of copyright music infringement so that the legal team can progress with their proceedings. The job holder will also audit area’s in conjunction with the National Licensing Sales Manager to analysis penetration and will also be tasked with lead generation for the office and field teams.

Duties and responsibilities:
• Complete all assigned tasks in a prompt manner (within SLAs) and update same on IMROs CRM system.
• Provide the field and office sales teams with leads for new and reassessment business during area audits and day to day activities.
• Provide the legal team with a quick turnaround on monitoring requests, this is one of the main and key responsibilities of the role.
• To give evidence in court if required on copyright music infringement.
• Complete premises checks.
• Weekly reporting to the National Licensing Sales Manager on progress and call cycle.
• Support when required for the other members of the Licensing Department
• Undertaking such other duties as may be assigned by management from time to time.

Minimum Requirements:
• 2 years’ work experience in any business environment.
• An ability to work to the highest level of quality and have outstanding attention to detail.
• Strong communication skills.
• Excellent MS Office skills – knowledge of Microsoft Dynamics CRM an advantage.
• Strong written and spoken English.
• Proven track record for working on own initiative.
• Strong planning and organisational skills. Desirable:
• Confident, tenacious and enthusiastic self-starter who will embrace the challenges of this role. We are an equal-opportunity employer and welcome all candidate applications who meet the minimum qualifications listed above.

Terms: 1-year fixed term contract Benefits: 25 days annual leave.
Payment: Basic €30K, €5K Annual (paid monthly) KPI Bonus. Start: Immediate Package: Car, Laptop and Mobile Phone. Important: this role is not Monday to Friday, 9-5, this role requires regular evening and weekend work. Please do not apply for this role if this is an issue.

Please send a CV and cover letter to by 5pm Friday 1st February

Top prize of €1,000 in the Pan Celtic National Song Contest 2019

The deadline for entries for Pan Celtic National Song Contest 2019 is fast approaching. In addition to the top cash prize of €1,000 for the winning composer there will be the opportunity to represent Ireland at the International Pan Celtic Song Contest in Letterkenny in April.

The purpose of the competition is to find a newly composed song in the Irish language. Applications are welcome in any genre from traditional to pop and rock and the only stipulation is that both music and lyrics be newly composed and in Irish.

This is the eighth year that the popular competition takes place in Carlow. Main sponsor is IMRO and the competition draws entries of the highest quality from across the country. Last year’s winning song ‘Ar Saoire’ composed and performed by Galway duo Pádraic Seoighe and Niall Teague went on to win the international contest.

The closing date for receipt of entries for the 2019 competition is Friday, 1February. The entries will then be shortlisted and the finalists will compete live at the gala finals on Saturday, 23 March in Carlow’s G.B. Shaw Theatre under the musical direction of Ollie Hennessey. A panel of judges will choose the winning song to go forward to represent Ireland competing against songs from Wales, Scotland, Brittany, Cornwall and the Isle of Man at the International Song Contest as part of the International Pan Celtic Festival which will be held in Letterkenny in April. The prize for the international winner will be €1,500 and the Pan Celtic Trophy.

Full rules and application forms are available on or contact the organisers on 085 1340047, 087 2857048 or email

Brand-New RTÉ Campaign To Choose The Nation’s Favourite Folk Song Launched

Ireland’s Favourite Folk Song, is a brand new RTÉ series and national campaign in association with IMRO to identify and celebrate the songs that define us as a people.

Throughout the centuries, folk music has immortalised the real, live experiences of the citizens who have lived on, or passed through this island. Ireland has a vast archive of beautiful folk songs, both in English and in Irish, which its citizens draw on in times of joy and sorrow, to entertain, or to capture big personal or historic moments. Many of these songs have been passed down through families for generations. Some of these songs were written by Irish people, some brought in from other cultures, but what sets folk music apart is that it captures the eternal stories, hopes and struggles of ordinary people.

And every one of us has a favourite: a song we sing at family events and get-togethers, or a song that is dear to us. And now RTÉ is asking the people of Ireland to tell us what their favourite songs are, and why.

Between now and 8th February, we’re asking you to log onto, click on the Nominate section and tell us what your favourite folk song is – and why you love it. It can be a love song, a political song, a song about nature, life, loss, emigration, whatever. It can be in Irish or in English. It can be an Irish song or an international folk song that we have taken to our hearts as a people. As long as it’s a folk song, and you love it, then it’s eligible for consideration.

Once we’ve gathered your nominations, an independent jury of music lovers and experts – see list below – will review the list and put together a shortlist of ten folk songs they feel best capture the public’s favourites, but also the spirit and story of Ireland.  On 19th April, RTÉ will announce the 10 shortlisted folk songs to the nation in a special edition of The Ronan Collins Show on RTÉ Radio 1. Over the following five weeks, people will be invited to discuss the songs and tell us which one is their favourite of the 10.

To help people to make an informed choice, a brand new 5-part series, Ireland’s Favourite Folk Song, presented by internationally acclaimed Irish singer and folk legend Mary Black, begins on RTÉ One on 21st April. Each episode will tell the story behind two of the shortlisted songs. Audiences will be also able to discover more about each song across RTÉ Radio 1 and on

“Folk music is in my blood. Many of these songs have shaped and defined my life. So I’m excited to be part of a conversation that celebrates our rich folk-song heritage”  Mary Black

The song chosen by you as the nation’s best-loved folk song will be announced live on The Late Late Show in May 2019.

We hope the public will embrace the spirit of this campaign, which is to celebrate one of the things we do best – and inspire the nation to sing, perform and love folk music.

For further information on the project and the selection process, please go to



Diarmaid Ferriter is Professor of Modern Irish History at UCD. His books include The Transformation of Ireland 1900-2000 (2004), Judging Dev: A Reassessment of the life and legacy of Eamon de Valera (2007), Occasions of Sin: Sex and Society in Modern Ireland (2009) Ambiguous Republic: Ireland in the 1970s (2012) A Nation and not a Rabble: The Irish Revolution 1913-23 (2015) and On The Edge: Ireland’s Offshore Islands, A Modern History (2018). His latest book is The Border: The Weight of a Century of Anglo-Irish Relations (2019). He is a regular broadcaster on RTE television and radio and a weekly columnist with the Irish Times. He co-wrote and presented the documentary series The Limits of Liberty (2010) and the film Keepers of the Flame (2018) with Nuala O’Connor.

Dr. Aileen Dillane is an ethnomusicologist and musician with research interests in local/global Irish music; musical migrations and diasporas; protest music; popular culture, and soundscapes. She lectures in music at the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick, specialising in the traditional, folk and vernacular musics of Ireland and its diaspora, as well as in popular music studies and ethnomusicology.  She co-founded/co-directs the Popular Music and Popular Culture and the Power, Discourse and Society research clusters at UL, both of which have associated book series with Rowman & Littlefield. Aileen’s most recent publications include the co-edited volume Songs of Social Protest: International Perspectives (Sept 2018), which features a number of chapters on Irish song. She has also published widely on the subject of Irish traditional music and song. Aileen is currently working on a monograph on Irish and Irish American music, which is centred on historical and contemporary case studies from Chicago, the site of her doctoral work at the University of Chicago, where she was a Century Fellow and Fulbright Scholar. Aileen was the 2016 recipient of the O’Donnell Research Fellowship in Irish Studies at the University of Melbourne; the 2017 Visiting Professor at the Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies, University of Notre Dame; and is currently a research fellow in the Dept of Music, King’s College, London. Aileen plays traditional flute and piano with the Templeglantine Ceilí Band (2010 All-Ireland winners) and has collaborated and recorded with musicians in Ireland and the USA.

Leagues O’Toole has spent most of his adult life writing about records and promoting live music, with a diverse love of sounds from across all genres. He began writing as part of Dublin’s underbelly of punk-fanzine culture is the early 1990s, graduating to Music Editor of the street-wise Dublin Event Guide before becoming a regular contributor to the NME, Melody Maker, The Irish Times and a slew of music magazines and newspaper across the globe. In the early 2000s he presented and edited the RTE leftfield music television programme, No Disco, focusing on numerous movements within the culture from the home grown Irish independent scene to hip-hop, electronic and folk music, including a special one-off documentary about 1970s pioneering folk-trad ensemble, Planxty. After his tenure with No Disco he wrote the band endorsed biography, The Humours of Planxty, published in 2006 by Hodder Headline, contributed as guest radio presenter for the likes of Tom Dunne and Donal Dineen on Today FM, and began publishing his own aesthetic-driven music magazine, Foggy Notions for a number years. He also programmed the famous Whelan’s venue for five years before joining the ranks of Aiken Promotions where he currently works with hundreds of international and Irish artists including The National, Damien Dempsey, John Prine, Father John Misty, Villagers, Future Islands, Will Oldham, Mitski, Jon Hopkins, Agnes Obel, Fleet Foxes, Beach House, Andy Irvine, Paul Brady, Lankum, Lisa O’Neill to name a few.

Nuala O’ Connor In 1987, Nuala established Hummingbird Productions with Philip King to produce high quality music and arts documentaries. With Philip King she worked as assistant producer on Bringing It All Back Home and is the author of the book which accompanied the series. Nuala won an Emmy award for writing a one-hour version of Bringing It All Back Home for the Disney television channel in the US. Nuala has written, directed and edited amongst others Sult – Spirit of the Music (Series 1 & II), Sruth na Maoile, Freedom Highway, One Faithful Harp: The Life and Music of Thomas Moore, Se Mo Laoch (Series 1 to 6), The Raw Bar (Series 1 and II), documentaries on the life of Sinead O’Connor and Mary Black, and Donal Lunny: Following the Music. She is currently working as co-director and series editor of An Droichead Beo / The Living Bridge.  Nuala also worked as the traditional music reviewer for the Irish Times for many years.

Brian Mullen was born in Derry where he still lives. His mother’s family were all singers and he sang pop and folk as a teenager. At university in Bangor, North Wales he met musicians who had links with Ireland and, travelling with them, he met such singers as Nioclás Tóibín in Ring and Mick Flynn in Miltown Malbay. While studying Irish at NNU Coleraine he met Len Graham, Joe Holmes and Eddie Butcher, the last of whom had a lasting influence on his style and repertoire. He gathered songs at home while a teenager, then in Wales, around Ireland and in Coleraine, assembling an eclectic repertoire which has English, Scottish and American ballads, music hall ditties and songs in Irish. In 1986, he joined the BBC’s Irish Language Unit as a producer and shortly afterwards began presenting Caschlár which features music from all over the world and styles including pop,  soul, country and traditional Irish music.

Ruth Smith is a performer, broadcaster and musician based in County Clare. As a regular presenter on RTÉ Radio 1 she shares her knowledge and passion for folk music every Sunday evening on her show Simply Folk. In October 2018, alongside well-known broadcaster John Creedon, Ruth was co-host for the inaugural RTÉ Radio 1 Folk Awards in Vicar Street. An experienced MC & events producer, Ruth has worked with The Volvo Ocean Race, The London Olympics and closer to home with the GAA, MCing the All-Ireland Hurling and Football finals at Croke Park. At the 2018 Fleadh Cheoil Ruth was one of the presenters on TG4’s FleadhTV along with Hector Ó hEochagáin and Doireann Ni Ghlacáin. A multi-instrumentalist on fiddle, piano & guitar, singer & songwriter, Ruth has performed at many festivals and events around the country including Doolin Folk Festival, Temple Bar Trad Fest and Body & Soul. Ruth’s academic studies span the traditional, classical and theatrical worlds with a BA in Music, Drama & Theatre Studies and HDip from Trinity College Dublin and a Masters in Trad Performance from The Irish World Academy of Music & Dance, University of Limerick.

Vincent Woods is a writer and broadcaster who has worked extensively with music and musicians in public performances and as a critic and editor.  He co-edited The Turning Wave: Poems and Songs of Irish Australia and Fermata: Writings Inspired by Music and has written liner notes for a number of albums. He has written song lyrics set to music by Mairtín O’Connor, Aidan Brennan and Charlie McGettigan and recorded by a number of singers in Ireland the U.S. He was part of The Leitrim Equation stage performance (2015/16) and with composer/musician Danny Diamond and dancer Edwina Guckian has developed a new performance piece, Open Room. His plays include At the Black Pig’s Dyke and A Cry from Heaven. Recent publications are Leaves of Hungry Grass: Poetry and Ireland’s Great Hunger and Borderlines (with Henry Glassie). Vincent lives in Dublin and is a member of Aosdána.



IMRO Host Bagatelle @ 40


To celebrate their phenomenal forty years on the road, IMRO will host a special evening of live music and chat with iconic Irish band Bagatelle on Wednesday 30th January. On the night the band will be presented with an IMRO Award in recognition of their 40th anniversary.

Bagatelle began their musical career back in 1978 and since then have remained ever popular on the Irish music circuit.  Over the course of their forty years, they’ve had several No.1 hit singles with iconic songs such as ‘Summer In Dublin’, ‘Second Violin’ and ‘Trump Card’.

With platinum and gold status album sales and classic emigration songs like ‘Streets Of New York’, ‘Flight of Earls’ and ‘Boston Rose’, Bagatelle have remained a firm favourite with Irish audiences across the globe.

Over the course of their forty years, the band have shared stages with legends and international icons such as Bob Marley, John Denver, The Pogues, Duran Duran, The Pretenders, Van Morrison, U2, UB40, George Michael and Jose Feliciano, to name just a few.

Just two years ago Bagatelle completed their “Final Year Tour” and retired (for all of about 3 months!). Bored not touring, the band then played a major series of “One For The Road” sold out gigs.

Bagatelle @ 40, A Celebration 40 Years of Original Music, is sure to be a special night of music and chat taking place in IMRO from 7.00pm-9.00pm on Wednesday 30th January. The event is free but booking is essential through

Date: Wednesday 30th January
Time: 7:00pm – 9:00pm
Location: IMRO, Copyright House, Pembroke Row, Dublin 2
Bookings:  FREE Event | Booking Essential | Email:



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