JANUARY IS often a dull month, given that Christmas is over, we are in the bleak mid-winter, and spring is some weeks away, but there is plenty happening in the Róisín Dubh to keep you entertained and keep your spirits up.
Two of the highlights of the month will be Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and Grandmaster Flash.
New York indie rock band Clap Your Hands Say Yeah - Alec Ounsworth (guitar, vocals ), Robbie Guertin (guitar, keyboards ), Lee Sargent (keyboards, guitar ), Tyler Sargent (bass guitar ), and Sean Greenhalgh (drums, percussion ) - play on Friday January 27 at 8pm.
CYHSY first came together in 2004 and quickly earned critical and popular acclaim with the 2005 release of their self-titled (and self-released ) debut. They toured nearly non-stop, pausing only to quickly record 2007’s Some Loud Thunder before hitting the road once more. As such, the band were understandably feeling a bit spent when the time came to consider their third album, so they took some time out before recording and releasing Hysterical this year.
Then on Saturday January 28 another New Yorker, Grandmaster Flash plays the Róisín. DJ Grandmaster Flash and his group the Furious Five were hip-hop’s greatest innovators, transcending the genre’s party-music origins to explore the full scope of its lyrical and sonic horizons.
Their song ‘The Message’ remains one of the all time great rap songs, whose socio-political commentary on struggling families remains relevant and thought provoking, as does its refrain: “It’s like a jungle sometimes/It makes me wonder how I keep from going under.”
Flash was an inspiration to Debbi Harry, who incorporated rap into Blondie’s 1981 hit ‘Rapture’. His DJing and sampling techniques were also innovative and were best heard on ‘The Adventures of Flash on the Wheels of Steel’ which mixed together Queen’s ‘Another One Bites The Dust’, Blondie’s ‘Rapture’, and Chic’s ‘Good Times’.
In 2007, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five became the first hip hop act inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
In February two of the finest Irish acts will play the Róisín - Jape at Strange Brew on Thursday February 2 and Lisa Hannigan on Wednesday 15. Then in April The Lemonheads will perform their classic 1992 album It’s A Shame About Ray on Monday 16.
Tickets are available from the Róisín Dubh and www.roisindubh.net