December 1, 2023

It’s your Galway Gig Guide! Yes, we have compiled the very best of what’s happening this weekend just for you. With the start of the Galway Continental Christmas Market, the festive season is in full swing. Read on to discover just some of the live gigs and events taking place in Galway this weekend.  It’s going to be great. 

Friday: Nov 11th

5pm: The Galway Continental Christmas Market

It’s here! The Galway Continental Christmas Market opens this Friday, November 11th at 5pm. Eyre Square is transformed with more than 50 wooden chalets, under the watchful view of the Big Wheel, carousel, and Santa’s Grotto. It’s a magical feast of music, theatre, food and drink. For food lovers, there’s a host of international delicacies, from bratwurst and French pastries to confectionary and crêpes. Walk through the enchanted light gardens and sample the Christmas atmosphere in the heart of the city of the tribes. And there will be a host of artisan products available to buy as the ideal gifts this season.

Christmas Market Opening Hours

Monday – Wednesday: 12 noon – 8pm (bar until 10pm)

Thursday – Saturday: 10am – 10pm Sunday: 10am – 8pm

Charlie Byrnes Bookshop

6pm: Launch of IONBHÁ The Empathy Book of Ireland

A relaxed evening of readings takes place at Charlie Byrnes bookshop at the Cornstore on Middle Street for the launch of IOBHÁ The Empathy Book of Ireland by the UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre.

An Taibhdhearc

8:30pm: Freebirds M.C.C Project (Film and Music)

The screening of Freebirds at An Taibhdhearc gives a snapshot into the life of Irish bikers in a rural community. Together, they formed a unique motorcycle club, sharing their insights into life on the road. This is a chance to delve into the world of rallies, community and sharing stories of love and loss around night long campfires. The night includes live rock music from Lazarus Brothers and an artwork exhibition.

Róisín Dubh

8pm: Shawn James with support by Iona Zajac

With influences spanning the likes of authentic performers Tom Waits, Otis Redding and Bill Withers, Shawn James makes music that will stand the test of time.   Infused with R&B, folk, rock and blues, the Chicago native writes with soul.  His heartfelt lyrics are testament to his gospel roots, while his live shows are a fusion of upbeat energy and nostalgia.  Shawn James admits he “gets bored easily” and as a result, his performances are unexpected and fresh every time.  His genuine persona and original sound have secured a legion of fans over the years. Now, he is set to delight a Galway audience at the world-famous stage that is the Róisín Dubh.

Image courtesy of Shawn James Facebook Page. Photo Credit After Dusk Photography. 

Monroe’s Tavern

4:30pm: The West Sessions

From the slow and lyrical to the lively and upbeat, expect the unexpected at the West Sessions.  You may come across world renowned trad musicians, such as Sharon Shannon, on their home turf performing with talented friends. Or spot a certain Mr Monroe on the bodhran. It’s all happening this Friday afternoon.

10pm: The Tav Jam Band

There’s nothing like a good jam when talented musicians get together and this band will have you on your feet with their take on classic covers and rocking hits. On Friday evenings, Monroe’s Tavern is transformed into a vibrant Friday night venue as part of their free live entertainment seven days a week. 

Monroe's Tavern image for the weekend Galway Gig Guide

The Kings Head

10:30pm: Red Tape

 Join Red Tape at the King’s Head this Friday night for rousing tunes and rocking hits with their own musical flair. Popular Galway band Red Tape will bring their classic rock and blues vibe to the King’s Head stage. Ultimately, this talented group will take us through the best of stomping hits, chart-topping covers, and tribute beats. Set your weekend up in style with Red Tape at the King’s Head.

The Skeff Late Bar and Kitchen

10pm: Evoke

Galway band Evoke are making waves on the local music scene thanks to their high energy and dedication to musicianship.  The young band are at the start of their musical career and are renowned for their powerful stage presence that can whip an audience into a frenzy with their rousing beats.  Followed by DJ Dave G.

Saturday November 12th

An Taibhdhearc

Workshop 12pm and Show 8pm: Cyberdelic

Question your vision of reality with Cyberdelic at An Taibhdhearc this Saturday, November 12th.  With an afternoon workshop and evening show, this is an opportunity to immerse yourself in an audio-visual experience looking at the connection between art and technology.  In essence, Cyberdelic explores our perception of reality. With audio-visual art performance, DJ and VJ performance, video mapping demonstrations and more.

Róisín Dubh

8pm: The Clockworks

Galway Indie-rock band The Clockworks have had a meteoric rise on the music scene and are back on tour following the release of their latest single ‘Advertise Me’. Inspired by the likes of the legendary David Bowie, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and The Cure, their latest work signifies a move into new territory, with darker undertones and a satiric gaze at contemporary culture.

This raucous rock number nestles within their indie roots and post-punk sound. Having met at NUI, Galway, the four-piece band features Loughrea locals James McGregor (vocals, guitar), Seán Connelly (guitar) and Damian Greaney (guitar), as well as Limerick City native Tom Freeman (bass). A move to London proved successful for the group. They were spotted and swiftly signed by record executive Alan McGee of Creation23 – who has championed the likes of Oasis, The Jesus and Mary Chain and Primal Scream.

Monroe’s Live

8pm: Nick Shoulders

Hailing from Fayetteville, Arkansas, musician Nick Shoulders brings the vocal range and inspiration of the American South to Monroe’s Live on Saturday, November 12th.  The singer-songwriter is renowned for the reawakening of traditional country music, with a yodel, whistle, and strum of his guitar.  This is traditional, old-style country at its finest.

However, Shoulder’s lyrical style does not shy away from political commentary.  This talented artist is not afraid to drag American country into the modern age, with his drive to make it more inclusive and awaken audiences to its complex social history.  Doors open at 7pm with support from Gravedancer.

10pm: Ruaile Buaile

Fast-paced and furious, the twisted-trad sounds of talented musicians, Ruaile Buaile, are set to ignite the stage at Monroe’s Live on Saturday, November 12th. It’s traditional with rousing rhythm, infused with a strong folk and country vibe.  Hailing from the heart of Ireland, the midlands, Ruaile Buaile are creating a stir at home and abroad. 

This is a ground stomping event, as the musical chemistry of the five-piece ensemble creates a bold and daring beat. Infused with the banjo of Cillian Doheny and fiddle of Cathal Guinan, Ruaile Buaila are not afraid to push the boundaries, with their own take on old Irish favourites and recent classics. The powerful vocals of Niall Kelly and Shane Lynam – who also play the guitar and bass respectively – are perfectly complemented by Jack Godley on percussion.  

Together, they bring a fresh take on the traditional, while staying firmly rooted to the past. In line with this, they’ve recorded their own original songs, with two studio albums highlighting the Ruaile Buaile brand of musical knowledge.

Monroe’s Tavern

10pm: Feedback

With their twist on modern, Irish, and classic covers, Feedback are set to take your Saturday night to new heights at Monroe’s Tavern.  It’s fun, it’s vibrant and it’s free. Ollie Keogh and the crew of Feedback are always guaranteed to have you up on your feet, bringing you from Aslan to Tina Turner in style.

Feedback at Monroe's Tavern in Galway's Westend

Skeff Late Bar and Kitchen

10pm:  DJ Ferg

Eyre Square will be hopping this Saturday night as DJ Ferg hits the decks at the Skeff Late Bar.

The King’s Head

11pm: The Lewd Tunes

This band bring the best of modern hits and contemporary classics with their own pop and soul twist. With a prolific set list ranging from George Erza to The Jackson Five, you will be dancing the night away to the rousing rhythm of this energetic ensemble.

Sunday November 6th

Monroe’s Tavern

1pm: The Galway Bay Jazz Band

What better way to swing, jive and jump into Sunday than with the Galway Bay Jazz Band. This high rhythm, energetic band are a guaranteed floor filler.  Here, you can fly to the moon and back as the riff of the sax, the high notes of the trumpet and the beat of the drums take you to a time when popular jazz classics topped the charts.

The Galway Bay Jazz band at Monroe's Tavern

The Skeff Late Bar and Kitchen

9pm: Beggars Velvet followed by DJ Mark

This three-piece acoustic ensemble are talented multi-instrumentalists.  With three men and one box, Beggars Velvet are proving to be a hit on the local music landscape with their ability to interweave their own take on classic tunes. With ingenuity and gusto, Beggars Velvet bring a fresh sound to covers, taking them to new heights. It’s your favourite song with a twist. Together, they are always evolving to ensure your night out is one to remember.

The King’s Head

9pm: Pyramid

Join Pyramid this Sunday for the ideal opportunity to say a fond farewell to the weekend.  Catch the band as they bring the beat to the best covers, classics, and all-time hits. Ultimately, the King’s Head stage comes alive every night of the week with free live music.  This is what make the music scene in the city so vibrant and welcoming.  At the end of the weekend, don’t miss your chance to catch these Galway greats in action. 

Róisín Dubh

11pm: John Conneely Inc

While the earlier gig of raucous Russian ensemble Pussy Riot has sold out, all is not lost this Sunday night at the Róisín Dubh. Enjoy the swing, jazz and modern vibes of John Conneely Inc and his talented band of musicians. A night with John Conneely Inc cannot be replicated anywhere else.  Always packed to the rafters, it’s a Sunday night Galway staple that will set your heart alight time and time again. 

John Conneely at the Roisin Dubh

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