Live Review: Tradfest Kilkenny – John Cleere’s Bar & Theatre, 16/18/20.03.2022

The annual Kilkenny Tradfest made a welcome returned to the delight of music goers and running from the 16th to the 20th featuring some of Irelands finest Irish Traditional music and some Folk thrown in for good measure, it runs taking in a number of the cities pubs & venues.
I managed to get to cover three such nights in the award winning venue John Cleere’s Bar & Theatre. First were The Bonny Men on the 16th, considered to be one of the most exciting Irish traditional music groups hailing from Dublin and consisting of seven member’s playing a range of instrument’s and
singing a mixture of original and contemporary folk songs.
Tonight they are delighted to be back in Kilkenny and happy to be playing live again, as are the sold out audience to have them back.
The band played for close to a two hour set combining old and new jigs & songs which had the audience shouting yelps & cheers as is the tradition with a good Irish music session.
They even at the end, finished out the night with a never before played set of music, which we were told was a tribute to one of The Chieftains.

The Bonny Men.

My second night back in Cleere’s Bar and Theatre and this time it is for Seo Linn an Irish folk/indie group who sing for the most part is As Gaeilge, doing the odd English rendition here and there as they set list shows.
Casadh an tSúgáin
Soilsiú an Lae
Réidh le Dhul
Wake Me Up – Lig Mé Saor
Táim in Ann
Apple of My Eye ( Damien Dempsey cover)
Molly na gCuach
Waiting for the Time
Siúil a Rún
January Snows
Set of Jigs (First Night in America / Bye a While)
Cailleach an Airgid
Fionnghuala (Acapella)
I Will Wait (Mumford & Sons cover)
Mo Ghile Mear
Geronimo (Sheppard cover)
Bain an Glas / Silver Spear
Ar Scáth a Chéile
I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You (Elvis Presley cover)

As you can see it was a lengthy set list which kept to sold out crowd very happy and another aspect of the guys is there crowd interaction where at times getting the crowd to dance / crouch down and jump even at times teacher some small bits of Gaeilge for those that might not speak it, so they can sing along but judging for most of the crowds reactions they didn’t need much teaching and sang loud in their parts.
Even at one point there was a small bit of Ugandan thought for participation as their first single was wrote there.

Seo Linn.

The third and final night of Kilkenny Tradfest arrived in Cleere’s Bar and Theatre with a fantasist performance from Inni-K who draws on her extensive background in folk and traditional Irish music.
Tonight we are mainly treated to tracks from her recently released album Iníon. Playing the entire nine songs from album.
The eleven song set was another mix of As Gaeilge and English, airing to the more As Gaeilge with some added Sean-nós.
Pestered by an annoying tickly cough through out the night, this in no way inhibited Inni-Ks singing performance who even at one point took to playing the tom drum at centre stage for one song and to do so the drums had to be moved and then replace all done in quick time.

So an end to another great Kilkenny Tradfest which had been missed by so many the past couple of years due to the strange time we all had to live through.


Previous Blu-Ray Review: To Sleep So As To Dream
Next Live Review: Dea Matrona / Jack Devlin - Whelan’s, Dublin 18.03.2022

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