Mick Heaney

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 Gay Byrne’s great strength as a radio host was his capacity to listen: his listeners   trusted him with secrets they would not share with their nearest and dearest. Photograph:  Photograph: Eddie Kelly/The Irish Times

Lest there be any doubt just how deeply woven into Irish life Gay Byrne’s persona was, just listen to Tico’s Tune by Manuel and the Music of the Mount(...)

The Dublin band The Blades, fronted by Paul Cleary, onstage in 1985. Photograph: Terry Thorp

What does a nation in crisis sound like? It’s a pertinent question for our uncertain times, which has of late been occupying Bob Stanley. For Stanley,(...)

Charlie Connelly mixes historical anecdote with reportage and memoir as he goes “in search of the magic of radio”.

A veteran of the Royal Air Corps during the first World War and a cousin of the writer Aldous Huxley, Capt Peter Eckersley seems like an unlikely prec(...)

Strictly Handbag hadn’t been Martin Thomas’s first rodeo – before Strictly Handbag, he had started a club night in Powers Hotel.

In 1994, Ireland found itself in rare auld times indeed. The country wasn’t just at the foothill of the Celtic Tiger, but wider curiosity in our cultu(...)

Come On Home ★★★ Peacock at The Abbey Theatre  Familial estrangement, religious hypocrisy, sexual repression, provincial suffocation: as a wri(...)

Our dad the poet: Seamus, Catherine, Mick, Marie and Chris Heaney in the 1970s. Photograph © Bobbie Hanvey; courtesy National Library of Ireland

Five years after the jolt of Seamus Heaney’s unexpected death we are back at a moment. Back with Heaney, whose poems resonate with the rhythm of the l(...)

Musicians Neil Martin and Christy Moore were among those to carry the coffin of uilleann piper Liam O’Flynn at his funeral in Kill, Co Kildare.  . Photograph: Alan Betson

Liam O’Flynn “understood simplicity in a way few people did. He understood space. He understood silence,” recalled the late uileann piper’s friend and(...)

Annie Ryan in Nora. Photograph: Ros Kavanagh

Nora Project Arts Centre Space Upstairs ★★★ Updating a classic is always a chancy endeavour, so kudos is due to novelist and playwright Belinda McKeon(...)

George Hook: Newstalk suspended the radio host after his comments about rape. Photograph: Newstalk

As demonstrations go it wasn’t particularly impressive. A dozen people stood on the narrow pavement outside Marconi House at noon on Thursday with ban(...)

Bono shows his appreciation to the Croke Park crowd during U2's 360 Tour performance in July 2009. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Sometimes, as Sean Spicer is finding out in the White House, it’s the simple questions which are the hardest to answer. For music fans, and especiall(...)

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