Traditional Irish Music
I hope I'm not breaching any forum rules by asking this - if so, moderators please feel free to delete!
Over the past year or so I hadn't been getting out for sessions due to work and further education committments, and when I was going to sessions they were mostly outside of Dublin. I have finally got a bit more free time to get out to sessions, am spending more time in Dublin, and after an amazing week at the festival in Drumshanbo I have a renewed resolve to get out for a few tunes more often.
I'm hoping someone in the know can recommend some sessions for me in Dublin based on a few criteria:
1. Somewhere that newcomers/outsiders are genuinely welcome. I know some sessions might be more 'gigs' or gatherings for friends for a few tunes, and I know often even these can be welcoming to newcomers, but I would like to be sure I'm not stepping on any toes or crashing anyone's party!
2. Somewhere that isn't usually too insanely packed/noisy - I have been to O'Donoghues a few times and each time had great craic with the musicians, but on those occasions it was just far too loud for me to really enjoy the tunes.
3. Somewhere that is biased heavily towards the tunes rather than ballads. I certainly do enjoy a few songs during the night, but a session that's 50/50 tunes and ballads wouldn't really be my cup of tea.
4. It's a big bonus for me if the session usually has a few resident pipers and/or flute players.
5. Location-wise, I don't currently have wheels, so I'm looking for places either near the city centre or along the Luas green line. I'm able-bodied and reasonably fit so don't mind a bit of a walk if necessary.
Any suggestions would be very much appreciated!
Áras Chrónáin in Clondalkin run some very good sessions, from beginners to intermediate, and it's a very welcoming atmosphere. Unfortunately, maybe, for you, it's near the Red Luas Line but have a look at their website and perhaps you might venture out.
No, there's no membership required and no charge. It's not a pub ... a Cultural Centre I think, .... though there is a bar on the premises. You just turn up and either listen or play or both! Sometimes from 8 to 9 it can be very slow but then picks up after that. I tend to exit around 10 when the 'pros' enter!
Colman O'Brien said:
Thanks for the recommendation - I remember a while back I got chatting to a lad at another session in town who was a very nice flute player and was telling me he normally played there. As the crow flies, it's probably not all that far, but I'm relying on public transport so I'd have to check if there is a feasible way to get from Clondalkin to Dundrum/Sandyford after a session by some combination of bus / Luas.
Do you need to be a member or Comhaltas or pay an entry fee or anything, or is it just like any other pub session ?
Your welcome to join in on any of the sessions in The Cobblestone, they start at 7pm every evening so plenty of time to get back to Dundrum/Sandyford area.
All the best,