Archive for June, 2008

Attention Guitar Lovers!!

Guitar enthusiasts and music fans across Dublin are in for a treat this week with the return of the Walton’s Guitar Festival of Ireland. Celebrating it’s 5th anniversary, this year’s festival is set to be one of the most exciting to date with a stellar line up and an awesome calibre of workshop mentors. Sponsored by Irelands pre-eminent instrument store, Waltons , the festival features performances from some of the world’s most critically acclaimed musicians who will be strumming their way through a number of different venues throughout Dublin from July 2nd – July 6th. Not only can punters experience some of the industry greats performing live, they will also have the rare opportunity to partake in workshops headed by the likes of Australian Tommy Emmanuel , who is widely reputed to be one of the world’s best acoustic guitar players, and Joscho Stephan, who is well known for his association with Django Reinhardt and the famous Hot Club de France.


The concerts kick off on Wednesday with a lunchtime performance by festival organiser, Alec O’Leary, and continue through to the evening with highly acclaimed Italian newcomers, Soloduo. Other highlights include performances by early music ensemble Tonos, and a collaboration of music by John Feely and Paraguayan Berta Rojas at the National Concert Hall. Croatian beauty Ana Vidovic brings her unsurpassed classical style to the National Gallery on Saturday lunchtime, followed by a performance in Tripod that evening by Tommy Emmanuel (Book early for this one, he really is amazing and the show is sure to be a sell out). The festival wraps up with the spectacular Joscho Stephan Trio who play an intimate show in the Sugar Club on Saturday night. As mentioned, the live shows are peppered with workshops and classes, including an exciting opportunity for budding guitarists to partake in ‘The G Factor’, a votes based competition on Wednesday with the winners being given the chance to perform a full concert at the Royal Irish Academy of Music. The full timetable of events is available here.

Diet of Worms Table Quiz

The excellent comedy group Diet of Worms are doing a table quiz this Wednesday to raise some funds to go to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Comedy, random trivia, prizes, what more could you want on a Wednesday evening!

Tables are 40e for a table of four and to reserve one email

Check out the Diet of Worms excellent youtube series, Dublin Stories. Funny stuff.


Dublin 7 goes generic


Formerly known as CHIPPER, it’s just down the road from PUB, PUB and PUB. Only a few minutes walk from ARTHOUSE CINEMA and PURVEYOR OF OUTRAGEOUS PADDYWHACKERY

On the corner of Lower Grangegorman and North Brunswick Street

Green Tourism

The most eco-friendly way to enjoy Dublin :)
dublin street 005

or make your own choice (green bus but still not so green)

(Spotted near Stephen’s Green)

Rock n Roll Dublin

dublin street 011
Originally uploaded by Mohan S

Spotted at St. Stephen’s Green

New writer alert / oops



In my enthusiasm, I rather charged in without introducing myself, so here we go: I’m conorh, a former waiter, pizza chef, puppeteer, and geo-electrical surveyor in the Northern Rif Mountains of Morocco. More recently I’ve been a presenter on the late, lamented Jazzfm and now seem to spend most of my time being a flaneur around town. My personal blog is here, my Flickr is here and if you’d like to say hello feel free to drop a line to deadpanfilm at themailofg dotcom.

A living legend walks the streets of Dublin


Crispin Hellion Glover is in town for the Darklight Festival. There should be a few tickets left, including mine which I had to give up as I’m double-booked. If you get there, let us know how it went.


"Don’t worry, you’ll be dead soon"


Just back from hearing John Banville talk about Yeats in the National Library – part of a week-long series of free Yeats-themed events. I’ve been a fan of Banville’s ever since I read the line in “The Untouchable” where the narrator describes a writer he meets at a party: “He was genuinely interested in other people, always a mark of the second-rate novelist”. Wonderful.

Tomorrow’s event will be actor Patrick Bergin reading some of the poems. He’s unlikely to be as entertaining as Banville, whose reflections on Yeats included some fine literary stand-up (or to be accurate, sit-down) material –

On the ‘greatest poet of 20th century’:
“I think he was greatly helped by the fact that he had no sense of humour. It’s very difficult to be a great man if you have a sense of the absurd”

On Maude Gonne McBride:
“Of course, she never slept with him. She knew, as all women know to their amusement and all men know to their chagrin, that not being slept with is the beginning of a life-long passion”

Approvingly, on Yeat’s combined lack of education and pretensions to great knowledge:
“In his sixties, Yeats was overheard chatting up a young lady at a party: ‘Ah my dear, I’ve forgotten all my Hebrew.’ Banville added “It’s one I use frequently myself.” 

When asked if he’d ever written poetry, Banville offered this, from a poem he’d written to his girlfriend at the age of twelve:
“Don’t worry, you’ll be dead soon”

And lastly, just before he read Sailing to Byzantium:
“I resent Cormac McCarthy for stealing the first line of this great poem as a title for his bad novel…”

THAT is no country for old men… 

You can hear Yeats speak here

Balcony TV Awards 2008

The Sugar Club, 20th June 2008

It was back to the Sugar Club for me on Friday night, this time to attend the Balcony TV Awards 2008. The awards mark the second anniversary of the show where many of Ireland’s finest new musicians have cut their teeth and made their first foray into the public eye. Started in 2006 by 3 flatmates (Stephen O’Regan, Pauline Freeman and Tom Millett), Balcony TV started out life recording up and coming Irish acts from a tiny balcony on Dame Street. The recordings quickly became an internet sensation and Balcony TV was recently nominated for a prestigious ‘Webby Award’. Balcony TV now boasts a sister site in Hamburg and rumours about expansion into the US and Europe are rife.

With free admission before 10.30 and a poster bearing the promise of FREE BEER, it was no surprise that the venue was packed tighter than a tin of sardines. Throw in entertainment from the likes of Royseven, The Kinetiks, John Spillane and Reader’s Wives amongst others, and you have all the right ingredients for a cracking showcase of the cream of new Irish talent. The awards, which came in the form of little golden guitars, were presented throughout the night by the likes of Leanne Harte (last year’s winner of the ‘Best Female’ award) and Una Mullally (journalist and Dublin music scene queen).

A special mention goes to The Kinetiks, who played an impressively tight set, and to German beatbox master, Alberto the Musicbox, who rapidly transfixed the crowd with his phenomenal ability to emulate an unbelievable variety of music genres and instruments. Check out his myspace page here.

Alberto the Musicbox

Alberto the Musicbox.
(Photo courtesy of

Right, time to get down to business. And the award goes to…..

Best Male Keith O’Brien

Best Female Luan Parle

Best International Act Apes in the Orange Grove (Netherlands)

Best Alternative Show Raven

Balcony TV Hamburg Jan Baruschke & Markus Rollwage

Best Show Zoe Conway & John McIntyre

Best Band The Script

Congrats to all the winners and thanks to the organisers for a great night!

Movies, circus and chocolate!

There are quite a few events being organised by the Temple Bar Cultural Trust that I must bring to your attention. They are free, but occasionally are ticketed, so no harm planning a little ahead in order to get your hands on the tickets.

There are free movies on the square in Temple Bar (where the market usually is on Saturdays) throughout the months of July and August, circus workshops that you can take part in, and for the first time ever a chocolate fair with tasting sessions, movie enticement (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, of course) and visual arts inspired by chocolate!

Just click on the relevant banners below to get to the relevant pages. They’re placed in (sort of) chronological order, just so you can focus on which event that’s taking place first.

Jameson Movies on the Square

Dublin Circus Festival

Temple Bar’s Chocolate Festival

Please note that for the tickets to the movies, the reservation usually opens only about a week prior to showing. So perhaps it’ll be a better idea to mark which film you may be interested in, then contact them for your tickets a few days ahead of it.

As for the circus, in general, tickets will be available from this weekend onwards (28th June) but no harm checking the actual listing (using the linked banner above) to have the right time and date for the show that you’re interested in.

With all free thing goes, tickets are allocated on a first come, first serve basis. So get moving and they should be lots of fun, whether for a group of friends together or for the family.

I really love it that Dublin has so much going on this summer at no cost for its citizens! :-D

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