Memories are funny things... I remember the elevator closing, the sun was full up by then, everyone had Guinness pints; Slo-Mo had four pints by pressing them against his chest with his forearm and was somehow still managing them. There were maybe 30 people on the elevator? 35? We pushed every button. It was smokey and hard to see, a singing man went down peacefully in the corner of the small box, he was out, nobody knew who he was. No matter. We were gonna continue the party upstairs maybe?
Downstairs (the night before?) was the afterparty. Trays and trays of pints flowed like tides from behind a desk and through a secret door. Spider from the Pogues was there playing tin whistle at the small bar. I wish I was lying. There was a stand-up bass and at one point the whole party was singing The Faces "Ohh La La".
This is how I became acquainted with Ireland.
Later my brother Serge and I would return to this town (Kilkenny) and spend at least a month living in a small room above a pub down the road. We were given a key. Enchanted? Perhaps.
You tell me.
What I'm saying is this: If you are anywhere in Europe (or the USA for that matter) and have the means to get to Killkenny for the weekend of April 29/30 you could do a lot worse. Marah will play two full band RnR shows, many other amazing musical acts will be on hand to perform. Music is everywhere then and the spirit of the thing is inclusive and intimate and rare. The walls come down and this one really is a "festival", a celebration of the great people who put it together and the great people they think to include, to invite around. Obviously, it's an honor to be asked, but it's also an amazing opportunity for us to selfishly watch some complete strangers literally have the best time of their lives and get a lot more then they bargained for or could have ever really imagined.
It's all very Irish, very RnR and very, very good.
OK, You've been pitched.
Can't wait for this one....DB
Photo: Marko Korkeakoski