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Top names in Country music for weekend festival in City



Mike Denver and his band will be performing this Friday night.

Fans of Country music are in for a treat this week when a line-up that includes Philomena Begley, Mike Denver, Louise Morrissey and rising star Johnny Brady will take over the ballroom of the City’s Clayton Hotel for the weekend,

A new state-of-the art dance floor being installed in the venue for the event.

The weekend will begin this Friday night with Johnny Brady and his and, plus Mike Denver and his band, with dancing from 10pm-2am.

“Johnny has built up a huge following in his two and a half years on the road and we felt the West of Ireland would be a good place for his Country show,” says his manager Linda Murphy of the decision to bring the event to Galway.

In his career to date, the Antrim singer has won numerous awards, and has been a mentor on TG4’s Ceol Tíre.

According to Linda, Johnny has earned himself the title ‘the gentleman of Country music’ for the courtesy and affection he shows to his fans, greeting people before shows, and staying on afterwards until he has met everybody who wants to talk to him. His energy-driven performances have earned him a huge following in Northern Ireland and a growing fanbase in the South.

He was reared a country music environment, as his mother and Big Tom are first cousins, and Johnny spent his childhood summers with his grandparents in Big Tom’s hometown of Castleblaney, Co Monaghan. While there he worked in the older singer’s pub, the Old Log Cabin. Little wonder, then, that Big Tom has been hugely supportive of Johnny. In addition to touring Ireland and the UK, Johnny has also performed on music tours to the sun in Europe, supporting the likes of Nathan Carter and Jimmy Buckley.

His high-profile gigs in Ireland include playing to 3,500 people at the Marquee in Drumlish Festival in Co Leitrim, last year. A busload of fans from Drumlish will be travelling to Galway for this weekend’s feast of music, while there will also be a contingent from Northern Ireland.

Following this Friday night’s show from Johnny Brady and his band and Mike Denver and his band, Saturday night will see Louise Morrissey, Brendan Quinn, Philomena Begley and Johnny and his band take to the stage. Again doors will open at 9pm with dancing from 10-2.

Sunday afternoon will feature Ciaran Rosney and Johnny and his band. Doors open at 1.30, with dancing from 2-4pm (children under 10 free).

Special weekend packages, which were available, are almost sold out, but tickets are still available for Friday and Saturday night and for Sundays afternoon.

Tickets for all shows are available at the door for €15.



Folk duo launch What Will Be Will Be



Niall Teague and Pádraic Joyce.

Folk duo Niall Teague and Pádraic Joyce are launching their new album What Will We Be, a  blend of folk, Americana and acoustic music, this Friday, May 19, at 8pm in An Taibhdhearc.

The success of their well-received 2020 release Taobh le Taobh, as well as recent successes at the Pan Celtic and Oireachtas Song Contests, spurred the duo on to record this new album which represents many years of collaboration and musical development.

It features Niall and Pádraic on vocals, harmonies, and acoustic guitars, Maidhc Ó hÉanaigh on double bass and Neil Fitzgibbon on fiddle. The catchy title track, What Will We Be, features contributions from percussionist Jim Higgins (The Stunning, Christy Moore, Paul Brady) and haunting, driving melodies on vocals, guitar, and fiddle.

Themes of love and hope are woven through Come Away with Me which features interplay between piano and fiddle as well as rich vocal harmonies.

People, places, and broken dreams are celebrated and lamented on Martin and Tom, Guitar Gold, Memories of You and Achill Island. The influence of David Henry Thoreau’s novel Walden features on the tracks Simple and Wise and Walden, with the beauty of nature, escape and simple pleasures at their core.

The album moves from minimalistic folk ballads such as Galway Ghost to swirling, string-laden arrangements on the song Neptune, both of which are influenced by maritime tales from Galway. Much of the work on this album was supported by the Arts Council, including work with musical arranger Eoin Corcoran and the string ensemble Treo.

The album will be launched this Friday, May 19, at 8pm in an Taibhdhearc. Tickets €22, plus booking fee at

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All roads lead to Dunmore as town tunes up County Fleadh



Most of the competitions for young musicians will take place this Saturday in Dunmore Community School. All the competitions are open to the public.

Dunmore is the place to be this weekend for lovers of traditional music, as the Galway County Fleadh will take place there from this Friday, May 19, to Sunday, May 23.

It is 10 years since Dunmore last hosted a fleadh and the local Comhaltas branch, which has re-formed since Covid, is looking forward to facilitating this gathering of music, song, dance and craic.

The official Opening Concert will take place in Dunmore Town Hall this Friday at 8pm with the acclaimed Mulcahy family from Limerick. Mick, Louise and Michelle are well known throughout the country, thanks to their live performances, television appearances and numerous CDs. They were the winners of the TG4 Gradam Ceoil Grúpa Ceoil Award for 2023.  Tickets for their concert can be purchased on the door and a great night of music is promised.

Two days of competitions will kick off this Saturday at the town’s Community School, with more than 1,500 competitors taking part. Participants will be hoping to qualify for the Connacht Fleadh 2023, which will be held in Ballina, County Mayo, from June 23 to July 2.

Competitions for those aged Under 10, Under 12 and Under 15 will be held in a large variety of instruments on Saturday, as well as in singing and Comhrá Gaeilge. Sunday’s competitions will be for the Under 18 and Over 18 ages groups, as well as in dancing.

On both days a large entry is expected for Grúpaí Cheoil and Céilí Band competitions across all age groups.

Seventeen Comhaltas branches from across Galway will have participants in this weekend’s competitions, which will result in a large number of visitors to the Dunmore area.

Members of the public are welcome to attend the competitions, which offer a great opportunity to hear and see the talent on display. There will be sessions in local pubs over the weekend as well and everybody is welcome to attend these.

For more information on the County Fleadh, go to


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Piano concert rescheduled for Tuesday



Pianist Cédric Pescia.

Music for Galway’s concert with renowned Swiss pianist Cédric Pescia which had been due to take place on April 27 but which had to be deferred, will now take place next Tuesday, May 23, at 8pm, in the Emily Anderson Concert Hall at the University of Galway.

This concert of German classics with Bach at its core, will brings the Bach element of Music for Galway’s 41st season to an end.

This world-class pianist who won the famous Gina Bachauer International Artists Piano Competition, has a repertoire that spans many eras from baroque to contemporary and he is widely known for his elaborate programmes. Cédric Pescia describes music as  ‘language and movement at the same time’.

Audiences will have a chance to experience his soft, clear touch as he performs a programme for solo piano that will include classics such as Schumann’s popular Waldszenen (Forest Scenes), a suite of nine short pieces, and the penultimate of Beethoven’s piano sonatas, No. 31.  These pieces will be interspersed with French Suites by Bach.

■ Ticket for Cédric Pescia’s concert are available at, or by phone 091 705962 and on the door on the night. They cost €20/€18. The price for fulltime students of all ages is €6 while MfG Friends can avail of the friends’ rate of €16.

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