Bar Ritz turns up the energy dial
Bluegrass and traditional-folk group The Rye take to the stage at Bar Ritz (Mulroy’s Bar), Castlebar, this Saturday night, May 30, as part of the ‘Finbar Hoban Presents…’ series. Providing support are Galway group A Band Called Wanda and local Castlebar band Na Ciotógaí.
The last time The Rye played Bar Ritz back in January of this year they bought the roof down with their unforgettable and memorable performance. Since their first gig on New Year’s Day, 2006, in the Roisín Dubh in Galway, they have been gigging steadily all across the country, getting audiences jumping in small country pubs, in nightclubs and at festivals.
This group really know how to throw a party and get a crowd dancing – especially with their original compositions (‘There’s a Moth at your Window’ being a standout number). The Rye churns out a lively fusion of Irish trad, country, reggae, folk, rock, blues and soul. Last February, Ross Christopher of Awaken Music Review gave the band a four-out-of-five star rating, saying their music is “full of danceable percussion, Celtic ferocity, and enough auxiliary instrumentation to put a smile on anyone’s face.” Mike Farragher of The Irish Voice was equally enthusiastic: “The Rye play, in their words, ‘savage driven ceoil.’ They throw together modern rock melodies into a stew of expert traditional playing, turn-on-a-dime chops rarely seen outside a lower Manhattan jazz club, and an irreverence that ties the whole package together in a rowdy, exuberant bow!”
Also well worth catching – and sure to get your feet moving – are the four-piece support group A Band Called Wanda, who have been making musical waves since 2004. From folksy cowboy songs to angst-ridden rock anthems, the band say they remain focused on writing honestly while using their collective musical training to expand their musical horizons. Although they list the likes of Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen among their influence, the bulk of their material is self-composed. If you can’t make it along to the Bar Ritz gig, you can catch them at the Volvo Ocean Race in Galway on May 28, when they will perform on the festival’s main stage.
Local Castlebar group Na Ciotógaí will also be on the bill on the night. Formed in May of 2007, the band is comprised of five members – Niall Regan (guitar/vocals), Melissa Faulkner (bass/vocals), Liam Murphy (drums/percussion), John Cloherty (fiddle), Maeve Hopkins (fiddle). The band was created by the Community Arts Officer John Coll, who also formed a samba band Batafada, which all members of Na Ciotógaí are part of. Na Ciotógaí play a heady mixture of quick steps and waltzes, trad and Irish rock, with a bit of Thin Lizzy and Christy Moore thrown in for good measure. The band has performed in a variety of venues around the region and is taking part in particular festivals internationally. In the last 12 months, they released a CD entitled ‘Abroad in Crimlin’.
This three-band line-up is sure to attract a crowd this Saturday night, so be sure to get there early – and be prepared for a night of energetic, high-spirited live entertainment and lots of fun.