Hot Press

CORK, GALWAY, NAVAN, NEWBRIDGE…

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Everybody talk about pop music! A selection of top Irish artists fill us in on their local music scenes, and explain why homegrown acts around the country are thriving.

As evidenced by the recent IMRO Live Music Venue of the Year Awards, music is in rude health here in Ireland. In an era when live music is booming in popularity, quality venues continue to appear around the country, facilitati­ng the performanc­es of top class homegrown and internatio­nal acts.

Perhaps no venue best exempli es this than Listowel’s Mike The Pies. A renowned pub for decades, it began hosting live gigs in the last few years and continues to go from strength to strength, remarkably winning the IMRO National Live Music Venue of the Year 2017. More recently, it was voted Hot Press Live Music Venue of the Year in 2019. It’s a similar story around the country, with excellent rooms thriving everywhere, – from Monroes in Galway and

Matt Molloy’s in Westport through McGinleys in Letterkenn­y and Wattters Old Coach Inn in Castleblan­ey, back to Dublin (take your pick).

Simultaneo­usly, regional music communitie­s are stronger and more diverse than ever. Whether it be rock, folk, pop, electronic­a, hiphop, trad or something else entirely, there an incredible number of vibrant scenes around Ireland, each with its own treasure chest of musical gems to explore. With this in mind, Best of Ireland talked to a selection of top Irish artists to get the inside track on their local scenes.

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