Alejandro Escovedo - From Austin, Texas, Kilkenny welcomes No Depression magazine's Artist of the Decade of the nineties. Ground zero punk rock dude with the Nuns, cowpunk progenitor in Rank and File, gutter brawling guitar rawker in True Believers and Buick MacKane; he's the genuine Real Deal.
Buddy Miller and his band - Well known for his work as lead guitarist with Emmy Lou Harris, Spyboy and Steve Earles Dukes. With his wife, Julie, he was nominated for a Grammy, narrowly edged out by Dylan's "Love and Theft". His fourth album Midnight & Lonesome guaranteed to garner elicit envious glances from Miller's peers - Uncut. But Buddy's music acknowledges no stylistic boundaries, and he explores pounding rock 'n' roll and soulful rhythm & blues. This is Country-Soul at its best.
Josh Rouse- Kurt Wagner of Lambchop called him "sublime";
Michael Timmins of Cowboy Junkies said he was responsible for making him
"fall in love with my record collection all over again". Since
acclaimed debut, Josh Rouse has been honing his skills as a songwriter, singer and guitar player to play for us in Kilkenny this year.
The Mendoza Line- Songwriters Timothy Bracy and Peter Hoffman brought together a love of Replacements era punk, traditional country and "Elephant 6" styled indie-pop into the musical language that defines
Hem - With a traditional American music but a contemporary aesthetic. The music is lush and full with Sally's voice shaping each word. Blending musical influences from rock n roll to Wooody Guthrie, it's
melancholic heartbreaking Americana.
Laura Cantrell has struck a chord with public and critics alike receiving glowing reviews in Mojo, Q and The Times (who named one of Laura's songs in their top 10 of 2000). She's recorded two prestigious radio sessions for John Peel who has called the album "my favourite album of the last ten years and possibly my life".
Jerry Fish and the Mudbug Club - Jerry Fishs alter ego Ger Whelan started off as lead singer with An Emotional Fish, one of Irelands leading musical lights in the 90s. Imagine an album where Tom Waits meets the Fun Lovin Criminals, throw in a sprinkling of George Melly and youve got something approaching the eclectic mix that exists on Be Yourself, the debut album from Jerry Fish & The Mudbug Club. Jerry recently won 'Best Roots & Country Artist' category in the Irish Meteor Awards.
Los Angeles' Devics' grand, melancholic ballads are mysterious and ambiguous, not evoking any particular decade nor neatly aligning with any musical trends. Think early bar-room sounds, think a cinematic music, the haunting soundtrack to a movie that has not yet been made. Dark, atmospheric and moody, the Devics' music has captured the attention of critics and fans alike.
Rosie Flores - The Rockabilly Filly has done more for women in
rockabilly than anyone since Wanda Jackson. Her mix of country and rockabilly
has won her fans world-wide and her breakthrough album A Honky Tonk Reprise
helped launch the new country scene, along with Dwight Yoaka and Lyle
Paul Burch - A warm welcome back to Paul who thrilled us in Kilkenny in 2001. Supporting Laura Cantrell this time around, Paul's brand of heartfelt music sounds as music from Nashville ought to sound.
Blue Moon Boys - From Fort Wayne, Indiana, this is high octane
rockabilly, rooted in the fifties sound and equally loved by the punk
and psychobilly audience.
Dan Bern & The International Jewish Banking Conspiracy- He's frequently been compared to Bob Dylan, because like the young Dylan, he's funny and smart and has a regally Semitic nose. Like Lenny Bruce, Bern can also be joyously obsene, as well as tender and even devout. Bern's persona interrogates God and indulges in a little speculative time travel. It sports a sensibility that seems to derive as much from Yiddish folk tales as Douglas Adams's "A Hitchhiker's Guide to The Galaxy."
Greg Trooper is one of the best-kept secrets in Nashville these days.
As diverse a group as Steve Earle, Vince Gill, Robert Earl Keen, Maura O'Connell and Billy Bragg have all recorded his songs. The trembling-twang production and rumbling rhythm here are as compelling as anything being recorded in Nashville today.
Jeff Finlin - American songwriter currently residing in Nashville, he's inspired by the Beat Poets. Jeff Finlin comes from the same motherlode of American music as songwriters such as Bruce Springsteen and Steve Earle.
The Boz Boorer All-Stars. Featuring Dibbs from the Rockats and Lyn from the Shillelagh Sisters, Boz Boorer (rockabilly legend and musical director and guitarist for Morrissey) returns to Kilkenny for the
sixth year running. We like to think of them as the Kilkenny House Band.
Wildfire Willie and the Ramblers - From Sweden, this is a hot, sweating, pyschotic spasm of a band. In high demand on the rockin scene, this band is best seen in their element in a hot, sweaty, smoky pub.
Mary Stokes Band - Ireland's premier blues band, with Mary's sultry vocals, one of the tightest outfits around.
Niall Toner - Niall is a long-running stalwart of the Irish bluegrass scene, with a critically acclaimed brand new album out.
The Sabrejets - The biggest and baddest psychobilly band to come out of Belfast. Screaming guitars and lots of attitude are what to expect from this outfit.
Aces Wild - Some home-grown rockabilly from the Liffey Delta.
Hot Club of Galway - Hot Strings, Hot Club, Hot Damn!
Borroway Blues Band - From the UK, the band is fronted by Thurles-born Tim Corbett on harmonica and vocals and they play 1950s West Coast Swing, Jump Jive and Chicago style Blues.
Two Time Polka - Based in Cork this band has a reputation for turning out great live performances. Their first album "From Pana to Louisiana" which comes soaked in the humid swamp heat of high Summer Louisiana, received buckets of praise.
Rye River Band Rye play original material and have their own distinctive
sound of the best roots and country blues. You could call it Mississippi
Delta Music by way of Co. Kildare.
Smouldering Sons of the West are fast emerging as a band that will take Rock to new areas of originality. This band can rock your socks off and have you crying in your beer such is their broad spectrum of appeal and emotion.
The Lynch Mob - Probably the foremost interpreter of Dylan and 60s rock in Cork, Ricky Lynch brings his mob to Kilkenny.
The Finnegans - Mandolins, Banjos, fiddle, acoustic guitars and bass are the chosen ingredients to create a set list that will fall nicely on the ears of the Kilkenny audience.
For details of the schedule click here.