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Satur­day 4

Vibe for Philo 2020

Whe­lan’s, Dublin

And still the love and ad­mi­ra­tion for Thin Lizzy’s Phil Lynott sol­diers on. This is the 34th Vibe for Philo, an an­nual cel­e­bra­tion/wake/ con­ven­tion of and for the man. The com­mem­o­ra­tive event be­gan in the back­room of a Dublin pub and has since be­come glob­ally recog­nised by any­one with an in­ter­est in Lynott and/or Lizzy. Usu­ally, the spe­cial guests aren’t an­nounced un­til closer to the event, but you can safely guess that due re­spect will be paid by es­tab­lished and emerg­ing mu­sic acts. There will, of course, be an added layer of sadness here, con­sid­er­ing that a staunch sup­porter of the fes­ti­val, Philom­ena Lynott, died last year. The event is sold out. TCL

First Fort­night: My Story, My Song Lost Lane, Dublin

First Fort­night, the arts fes­ti­val that fo­cuses on men­tal health as well as chal­leng­ing men­tal health stigma through cre­ative prac­tices, presents an evening of per­for­mance, con­ver­sa­tion and what their web­site info terms “per­sonal shar­ing”. As yet, no acts have been an­nounced, but we are told that a solid line-up of Ire­land’s “lead­ing mu­si­cians” will be per­form­ing cover ver­sions of songs that have as­sisted them through test­ing pe­ri­ods of their lives. Prior to per­form­ing their cho­sen song, artists will also speak about its im­por­tance to them. Mu­sic sooth­ing the trou­bled soul? Let’s all sign up for that, shall we? TCL

Wed­nes­day 8

Dublin Bowie Fes­ti­val

Var­i­ous venues, Dublin

Last year it was the 50th an­niver­sary of Space Od­dity, and now the fo­cus of the ever-in­ter­est­ing Dublin Bowie Fes­ti­val is the 50th birth­day of The Man Who Sold the World (the al­bum that, note Bowie ex­perts, was the first real step­ping stone to­wards fame for the song­writer). Al­though still with­out a ma­jor name spon­sor (some­thing we do not un­der­stand), the fes­ti­val man­ages to piece to­gether an in­ter­est­ing line-up of Bowie-cen­tric events. The key event for nerdy Bowie fans (that is, those who can list the mu­si­cians and pro­duc­ers on the al­bums) will be well served on Sun­day, Jan­uary 12th, when long-time Bowie pro­ducer and con­fi­dante Tony Vis­conti, along with Spi­ders from Mars drum­mer, Woody Wood­mansey, will be in con­ver­sa­tion (with this writer) at the Royal Col­lege of Sur­geons, 3pm. DBF runs un­til Jan­uary 12th. TCL


Róisín Dubh, Gal­way

Ev­ery Wed­nes­day night in the Róisín Dubh is of­fi­cially known as BOGOFF. What that trans­lates into is that if you buy one drink, you get one free from their spe­cial Wed­nes­day night menu. Not only that, but you get whop­per tunes from Si­mon, Song and the Róisín Dubh DJs. If Wed­nes­day nights out

on the dance floor aren’t your usual thing, this might be the per­fect time of year to sam­ple what it’s all about. We’re still in silly sea­son so all bets are off. LB

Thurs­day 9


Sugar Club, Dublin

Stay­ing with the Dublin Bowie Fes­ti­val, this con­cert fea­tures an en­sem­ble group of mu­si­cians that pro­duce vir­tu­ally be­spoke concerts that, in the main, per­form al­bums by other mu­si­cians/song­writ­ers. Pre­vi­ously, they have pre­sented re­work­ings of Suf­jan Stevens’ con­cept al­bum, Illi­nois, and Jóhann Jóhanns­son’s Or­phée. Tonight, how­ever, the job in hand is David Bowie’s so-called Ber­lin Tril­ogy – the al­bums Low, “He­roes”, and Lodger. Am­bi­tious? You bet, but Glasshouse are skilled at this sort of thing, so ex­pect the best. TCL

Cul­ture Vul­tures

Work­man’s Club, Dublin

Ir­ish Times con­trib­u­tor Tony Clay­ton-Lea’s salon-themed event Cul­ture Vul­tures is mak­ing its de­but at the Dublin Bowie Fes­ti­val. In its fifth year now, the chat n’ ceol event will host the panel dis­cus­sion Boys & Girls Keep Swing­ing: David Bowie – Pioneer Of Gen­der Flu­id­ity. The panel in­cludes law pro­fes­sor Alex Sharpe, au­thor Dar­ryl W Bul­lock and jour­nal­ist and sex­u­al­ity stud­ies scholar Roe McDer­mott, and mu­sic on the night will be pro­vided by the one and only Jack O’Rourke. Tick­ets are priced at ¤13.35. LB

Trad Thurs­days at Lucky’s Lucky’s, Dublin

Ev­ery sec­ond Thurs­day, Meath Street’s Lucky’s hosts Trad Thurs­days, an event where ev­ery­one at any stage in their trad jour­ney is wel­come. En­try is free and a num­ber of well-versed mu­si­cians will lead the ses­sion, so there’s “no slackin’” as they say on event page on Face­book. Be­gin­ners are more than en­cour­aged to bring along their own in­stru­ments and or­gan­is­ers sug­gest a do­na­tion of one tune (or three) min­i­mum to the evening. And if you can’t make this one, there’s al­ways the next. LB

Fri­day 10

Train Room

The Grand So­cial, Dublin; also Castle­bar, Co Mayo, Satur­day 11

We refuse to say any­thing re­motely close to “full steam ahead”, but when it comes to Co Mayo-based Train Room (aka singer and song­writer Joe Mon­aghan) there is pos­si­bly no other way to spin it. Mon­aghan has been chip­ping away for sev­eral years, but last year his per­se­ver­ance paid off when he signed a three-al­bum deal with Swedish la­bel, Nine­tone Records. The first re­sults from this is Train Room’s lat­est sin­gle, Tracks of Our Youth, which out­lines Mon­aghan’s pe­riod of grow­ing up in the Co Mayo town of Balla. As well as an air­ing of that song, ex­pect also a preview of his forth­com­ing al­bum at th­ese gigs. TCL

Chew­ing on Tin­foil

Whe­lan’s, Dublin

Fol­low­ing a sold-out show at Dublin’s Grand So­cial venue a few months ago, Tal­laght band Chew­ing on Tin­foil make a swift re­turn to de­liver once again their ska/punk mix. A Dublin band that doesn’t ap­pear on any end-of-year lists, this bunch formed about 15 years ago, and make spo­radic ap­pear­ances here and in the UK. With a num­ber of al­bums un­der their belt (we heartily rec­om­mend 2013’s Mar­row­bone Lane and 2016’s Mov­ing the Goal­posts), there is no short­age of set fillers. TCL

Rhys Lewis

Róisín Dubh, Gal­way; also Glass­works, Derry

Ox­ford­shire-born Rhys Lewis con­tracted the song­writ­ing bug at the age of 15, and 13 years later he is still suf­fer­ing. Signed to Decca Records, Lewis spent a ma­jor part of last year do­ing two things: sup­port­ing US song­writer Ju­lia Michaels dur­ing her world tour and prep­ping his de­but al­bum, which is sched­uled for re­lease shortly. From ma­jor venues with Michaels to much more in­ti­mate spa­ces in Ire­land and the UK on his own – Lewis is clearly up for the chal­lenge of look­ing at an au­di­ence eye­ball to eye­ball. His own take on his mu­sic? “If you’re a fan of Paolo Nu­tini and Hozier,” he in­formed the web­site

Lisa O’Neill, An Góilín Singers Club, Dublin, Fri­day

mu­sic­mus­ingsand­, “then you might find my mu­sic bear­able and, dare I say en­joy­able.” Now you know. TCL

Satur­day 11

Holy Holy

Olympia Theatre, Dublin

There are trib­ute bands and there are trib­ute bands. By which we mean some are plain aw­ful and vul­gar, and some are as real a deal as you can get with­out the orig­i­na­tors be­ing in­volved. Holy Holy are some­thing else, how­ever, be­cause they are a David Bowie trib­ute band that in­cludes one mu­si­cian (Woody Wood­mansey, drum­mer in the Spi­ders from Mars, go­dammit!) and one mu­si­cian/pro­ducer (Tony Vis­conti, a piv­otal fig­ure through­out Bowie’s ca­reer, from the late 1960s to his fi­nal al­bum, Black­star). The band are here as part of the Dublin Bowie Fes­ti­val, which this year cel­e­brates Bowie’s 1970 al­bum, The Man Who Sold the World, which will be played in its en­tirety. Ex­pect some Ziggy Star­dust tunes to fea­ture, also. TCL

AnEven­ing with Shaun Ry­der Sugar Club, Dublin

With Happy Mon­days be­ing the pri­mary band in Manch­ester’s rave

Sam Pa­ganini, Jam Park, Dublin, Satur­day Jan­uary 11th

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