Christie’s memory in Tralee lives on through music
MAYBE it was the line-up of brilliant musicians, or maybe it was the fond place that Christie Hennessy still holds in the hearts and mind of the people of Tralee. Whatever it was, it certainly drew the crowds to the Ashe Hotel for the 2018 Christie Hennessy Festival.
The late, great Christie passed away in December of 2007 but not before gifting the world such hits as ‘Messenger Boy’ and ‘Roll back the Clouds’.
Hundreds packed the intimate venue last Friday night to remember the great musician while MC for the night, another of Tralee’s favourite sons, Francie Conway, was on hand to welcome them all to the eighth year of the festival.
Co-founded by Francie, the festival was created to offer a showcase for up-and-coming and national performers as well as recognising Hennessy’s great contribution to Irish music. Among the many performers who played and sang over the weekend were musicians such as Liam O’Connor, Susan O’Neill, Liam Clerkin, The Righteous Dudes, Jim and Pam O’Connor and Chapter 2 up to the stage.
While Friday night was a time for relaxation and music, there was little time to relax over the rest of the weekend as musicians battled it out in the IMRO Christie Hennessy Song Contest.
Gemma Bradley from Derry emerged as the best of the talented bunch and was awarded with a cheque of €1,000 for her efforts.
Special guest on the night was the one and only Stella Parton, sister of Dolly, and a hugely talented singer in her own right.
Tralee band ‘Chapter 2’ perform at the 2018 Christie Hennessy Festival at the Ashe Hotel last Friday night. The festival is run every year to remember the great Tralee musician who passed away in 2007. INSET: Christie Hennessy himself. All photos by Fergus Dennehy.
ABOVE:Ann Marie Earley, Hugh Gallagher, Lisa Curran. David Dillane and Amy Roche pictured taking a break from helping out at the Christie Hennessy Festival at the Ashe Hotel on Friday night.
LEFT:Two legends of music, Francie Conway and Liam O’Connor, pictured before festivities kicked off on Friday.
Rebecca Kemp and Sandra Walsh were all smiles on Friday night.
Hannah Lynch and John Walsh from Tralee.