The popularity of 26-year-old singer/songwriter/performer George Ezra is such that all three of his Irish open-air shows are sold out. Who would have guessed? In the space of five years, Ezra has blossomed from a deep-voiced blues/folk ingenue to a chart-straddling success story, winning several Brit awards along the way.
With early influences ranging from Woody Guthrie, Howlin’ Wolf and Bob Dylan, Ezra has now gone beyond mere emulation. He is still young enough to develop in multifarious ways, of course, but for the moment he has songs from two albums (2014’s Wanted on Voyage, 2018’s Staying at Tamara’s) to choose from.
Ezra recently injured himself while jogging – he performed at the Isle of White festival last weekend seated on a stool. "Guess who went for a run yesterday and rolled their ankle? Guess who's headlining @IsleOfWightFest tonight? Guess who feels like a complete numpty (idiot)? That's right ladies and gentlemen! The answer is, Geoff!!," he posted on Twitter. "But THE SHOW MUST GO ON," he added. Here's hoping he is well and truly up and running for his Irish gigs.
When does he play?
The Malahide Castle concert is on Friday, June 21st. Ezra also plays Irish Independent Park, Cork on Thursday, June 20th and Ormeau Park, Belfast, on Saturday, June 2nd.
Who are the support acts?
West London indie rockers The Vaccines, whose most recent album is Combat Sports, and KAWALA, a north London outfit via Leeds, who recenlty sold out Whelan's on the back of their harmony-laden indie-folk sound.
What time should I arrive?
Gates open at 5pm. Bear in mind that Hogan’s Gate, near Malahide Dart station, will be the only pedestrian access to the grounds.
How do I get there – and home again?
The concert entrance is about a 10-minute walk from Malahide Dart station – the organisers recommend public transport, given the likely congestion and parking problems (clampers and tow trucks will be operating) for anybody who drives to the concert. Make sure to plan and book your return travel in advance – it’s a long walk back to the city.
Dart, train and bus: The last Darts leave for Dublin at 12.07am. The last trains leave for Dundalk at 12.05am. Concert buses will leave Malahide Cricket Club (follow the signs from the concert grounds) for George's Quay, in central Dublin, after the gig, at 11pm. You can book tickets (€10) in advance or take your chances and see if any are left on the night (but beware that the bus to Dublin after The Cure's recent concert, sold out before the gig).
By car: If you do bring your car, the limited parking opens an hour before the gates.
- Driving from the south: take the M50, leave the motorway at junction 3 (signposted M1 Belfast/Airport), continuing on to the R139. At the roundabout take the second exit, continuing on the R139 for 2.6km. Turn left on to Malahide Road/R107. Continue for 4.2km, then take a right on to Back Road. Follow the signs for the car parks, which will be on your left.
- From the north: take the M1, leave the motorway at junction 4 (signposted R132 Swords/Malahide/Donabate). Keep right, merging on to the R132. At the roundabout take the second exit, keeping on the R132. At the next roundabout take the second exit, staying on R132. Take a slight left, merging on to Swords Road/R106 and continue for 2.9km. Turn right on to Dublin Road/R107, continue for 700m and then turn left on to Back Road. Follow the signs for the car parks, which will be on your left.
What about disabled access?
The car parks include designated spaces. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to register. For accessible-ticket queries call Ticketmaster on 0818-903001 (Republic of Ireland), 0333-3219996 (Northern Ireland and UK) or +353-818-903001 (international).
What will he play?
Here’s the set list from his gig at the Jelling Musikfestival in Denmark on May 30th. Expect a few more songs, given that he’s the headline act at Malahide.
- Don't Matter Now
- Get Away
- Pretty Shining People
- Listen to the Man
- Did You Hear the Rain?
- Song 6
- Hold My Girl
- All My Love
- Blame It on Me
- Cassy O'
When does it all end?
Are there any tickets left?
The gig is sold out. Buy tickets from accredited sources only.
What’s the story with security?
Under-16s must be accompanied by an adult; bring your passport, Garda age card or driving licence as evidence of your date of birth. Allow time for security checks on the way in.
Bags larger than A4 size will not be permitted. All bags may be searched, and this can be time-consuming, so consider going bagless for easier entry.
There will be no cloakroom or storage facilities. No umbrellas, alcohol, garden furniture, selfie sticks, flares, glasses or cans, among other items, will be permitted at the event.
Can I take photographs at the concert?
Yes, but only with a smartphone or small camera. GoPros, professional cameras and any other recording equipment are banned.
What’s the weather forecast?
At the time of publication, the forecast is for overcast conditions, with evening temperatures expected to be about 13 degrees, and falling to 10 degrees later.