Three memorable Trinity debutants
They came, they saw, they rocked
Followed up their appearance at Trinity Ball with an unforgettable gig at McGonagles
Johnny Marr and Morrissey. The Smiths played their first Dublin gig when they performed at the Trinity Sudents Christmas Party in 1983. Photograph: Clare Muller/Redferns/Getty
Jeff Buckley: showed up, amid little fanfare, for a midnight show at the Trinity Ball in 1992. Photograph: Steve Eichner/Getty Images
The Smiths – December 1983
Although The Smiths’ appearance at the SFX in 1984 is often listed as their first show in Dublin, they did appear at the Students Union Christmas Party of 1983, in the basement of the Dining Hall. The band had released two singles, and appeared on Top of the Pops, but were far from the indie darlings they would become when their debut album appeared the following year.
Public Enemy – June 1988
A tale of two gigs this one. The first, an afternoon appearance at the Trinity Ball, was nothing to write home about. The second, later that same evening, in McGonagles, was unforgettable. Perhaps the first headline hip-hop act to visit the country, Chuck D used the opportunity – in between bruisingly loud songs – to educate the audience on civil rights. The band would release their legendary It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back just a month later.
Jeff Buckley – May 1992
When a young and unknown singer in an oversized shirt showed up for a midnight show at the Trinity Ball in 1992, nobody really seemed to care that much. By the time he’d finished his set, the crowd had noticeably thinned out. Four months later, Jeff Buckley would sign a million-dollar three-album deal with a major record label and become one of the most recognisable, and tragic, voices of his generation.