The legendary Irish Rock ‘n Blues Guitarist would have been celebrating his 65th birthday on last Saturday (2nd March), but for his untimely passing in June 1995.
The 12th Rory Gallagher International Tribute Festival, that will take place between Thursday 30th May and Sunday 2nd June 2013.
The organising committee have revealed a fitting line-up of 25 acts that will honour the renowned Blues ‘n Rock legend on 15 stages over 4 days in Ballyshannon, with free open air concerts, pub music sessions, exhibitions, nightly marquee concerts and to celebrate ‘The Gathering 2013’, the theme of the festival will be ‘Failte Isteach Rock’.
“The Band of Friends” that features Gerry McAvoy and Ted McKenna, and “Nine Below Zero” that features Mark Feltham and Brendan O’Neill, all four who performed alongside Rory for over 25 years are among the headline acts to appear at the 12th staging of the Festival in Ballyshannon.
Also set to appear is the lead guitarist with “Wishbone Ash” Andy Powell who will perform alongside former “Mama’s Boy’s” guitarist Pat McManus and his band, while local legend Johnny Gallagher and the Boxtie Band will once again thrill the thousands that will descend on Ballyshannon over the June weekend. A huge international fan base already makes the pilgrimmage annually to remember Rory in Ballyshannon flocking from over 20 different countries.
Rory Gallagher was born at the appropriately named ‘Rock Hospital’ in Ballyshannon on 2nd March 1948 and indeed the festival organisers are planning to stage a free outdoor concert in the Hospital grounds.
Other attractions will include an attempt to break the world record for the longest continuing music session, the record stands at 122 hours, while an international busking competition will take place on the streets of Ballyshannon and there will be a hedge-school style debate on the life and times of Rory Gallagher. Over 10,000 Rock, Blues ‘n Rory fans converged on Ballyshannon for last years 4-day Tribute and its expected that similar numbers will attend the 2013 four day event. The Rory Gallagher International Tribute Festival recently received the Irish Festival of the Year Award for attendances between 5,000 and 30,000, for the third year in succession.
Chairperson of the Rory Gallagher Festival – Barry O’Neill said: “We are excited by the line-up that we have assembled with many having played alongside Rory and many others having been inspired by Rory. With the theme for this year’s festival ‘Failte Isteach Rock’, we are issuing an invitation to Rory’s huge worldwide fan base and indeed Rock ‘n Blues music diehards everywhere, to make the trip to Ballyshannon this year to celebrate Rory and his music at this years festival, as it is certainly going to be one special tribute”.
Also among the line-up are German band “The Loop”, from Holland “Laundromat” and from the UK renowned tribute bands “Sinnerboy”, “Tony Dowler’s Hellhounds”, “Ali Clinton Band”, “Jed Thomas Band”, the bluesman – Peter Price and one of England’s finest blues rock performers Larry Miller and his band. Its expected that in excess of 2,500 overseas visitors from 20 different countries will once again make the trip to Ballyshannon to honour Rory Gallagher.
Irish artists among the strong line-up include Mick Pyro of “Republic of Loose” fame, he brings his rock and blues band “Mick Pyro Blues Experience” with Mick on lead guitar. Former “Dervish” guitarist Seamie O’Dowd will perform with his ‘full-on’ five-piece rock outfit, while well known Dublin acts, Dave McHugh Band and Calling Card will make a welcomed return. Indeed McHugh was responsible for the first touring Irish tribute band to Rory in the late 1990’s “After Taste”. The Festival is one of the fastest growing music events in the country and is renowned for the amount of open air free concerts that thousands pack the streets of Ballyshannon to enjoy. Other acts to watch out for include “Crow Black Chicken” fast gaining a good reputation in Ireland, as well as Donegal rock acts “Moonchild”, “Mark Black Band”, “Hot Smoke”, “The Screaming Orphans” as well as “Odd Socks Revival”, “Bad Boy Jake” and “The Bangin’ Yolks”.
All details regarding Festival Accommodation, Festival Programme, Nightly Concert Tickets are available through the new official website