A New Lease Of Life For Jigs And Reels: The Temple Bar Trad Fest 2010

It may strike some people as a bit of an anomaly to have a traditional Irish music festival in Dublin’s Temple Bar area. I know some of you are thinking stag parties and noisy not necessarily quality music. It is all the more astonishing that for the fifth time in a row Temple Bar Trad Fest managed to bring some of the best up-and-coming and established Irish and international traditional musicians to the big smoke.

Here is my list of recommendations if you missed the recent trad party:

Parsec
Hailing from Limerick but with passports from France, Austria and Italy – a lively, creative, jazzy sound, definitely one to watch

Líadan
Six energetic ladies from Galway and Limerick – a whirlwind of jigs and reels as well as some lovely sean-nós songs

Lo Cor de la Plana
Awesome all male band from Marseille – singing in the Occitan language, their tambourine sound rocked the Button Factory

Finbar Furey
Doesn’t really need any explanation, legendary ballad singer and it was obvious why – total stage presence, brilliant sense of humour and a natural storyteller

I did not have that much time to check out many of the other events this year, but attended a brilliant songwriting workshop with Eleanor McEvoy organised by IMRO. She really knows her stuff and packed an awful lot of information and advice into the two hours we had. If you haven’t listened to her song ‘Sophie’ yet, you can do so here.

All in all a varied and intriguing festival programme. However, if I had one wish for 2011: let’s please, please have a more userfriendly website!

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