Andy Irvine and friends 70th birthday celebration


Vicar Street, Dublin. Sat (sold out)/Sun 8pm €35 0818-719390

If there’s a musician who’s racked up more road miles than Andy Irvine, he or she must be orbiting outer space at this stage. Not many people know this, but Andy first stepped into the limelight as a child actor when he shared billing with Gina Lollobrigida. From there, this English-born, Irish adoptee segued effortlessly into the world of folk, where he forged the deepest of connections with fellow troubadours such as Dónal Lunny, Liam Ó Flynn and Christy Moore (aka Planxty). Irvine has been a member of almost every ensemble worth listening to over the past five decades, including Sweeney’s Men, Patrick Street and the multi-layered Mozaik.

Irvine’s facility with the most complex time signatures enabled him take eastern European music, and Bulgarian music in particular, by the scruff of the neck, re-tooling it for his own purposes and expanding our eardrums and range of joint movements in one fell swoop. One suspects that he keeps a picture safely locked in his attic, such is his resistance to the ravages of the passing years.

Two consecutive nights of celebratory concerts will include contributions from Paul Brady, Lunny, Ó Flynn, Mozaik, Sweeney’s Men and Paddy Glackin.