This much I know: Shane Dunne

Running outdoor festivals in Ireland can cause a grown man to shed a tear.

This much I know: Shane Dunne

It’s so unpredictable — if you have money to fling at the problem — or the rain — you’re fine but you’d be talking €50,000 easy to use mulch and stone to toughen up a high footfall area.

It took a couple of years for Indiependence to take off — the first couple of years lost money, but it’s breaking even by now, we’ve turned a corner. Which is just as well as it’s what I do full time.

I had a previous life — I was a microbiologist in the Department of Agriculture. I studied food science at the University of Limerick and then went straight into the job, moved up to Dublin — did the whole 9-5 thing. I even did a master’s by night in DIT, in microbiology and food safety.

I did some gig stuff on side but in the end, to my mother’s dismay, I left the permanent pensionable job. Five years later, she still brings it up!

My big lesson is that life is really short, though. I made my decision pretty quick — I thought it through on a Monday and handed in my notice on a Friday.

I wanted to do my own thing. I’d never go back to that life — I could say I have a major problem with taking orders from other people but that’s not really true — I work full time as production manager for The Coronas so they are effectively my bosses, but that’s different. I found the public sector a frustrating place to work — so much is based on how long you are there rather than how qualified you are for the job.

My biggest challenge has been going from a well-paid job to doing this full time. It was easy to get my mortgage, with the job, back in the Celtic Tiger but being self-employed is stressful. Its a juggling act.

I was a pretty shy kid, even up to my teens. I really only came into my own in college.

I got into music as a teenager. I saw Oasis in Pairc Uí Chaoimh when I was 16 and went — ‘So that’s live music? This is amazing.’ But I was never in a band. You can tell though, from crews, that a lot of production people would still like to be the ones performing!

My girlfriend will tell you how bad I am at separating work and time off. She says it’s impossible to sleep as I never turn my phone off so its bleeping away at 4am with emails.

My biggest fault is that I am very argumentative and single minded — I’m pretty sure I’ve never been wrong in my life! I’m strong willed and stubborn.

I’m health conscious in fits and starts — I’ll do six weeks at the gym and lose weight and feel great — then I’m off on a tour or at the festival and it all gets forgotten about.

I’m definitely a night owl — I’ve no problem getting up in the mornings, though, which is just as well as we do a lot of late nights and early mornings. I did 23 days in 30 with The Coronas once — Limerick on a Friday and Derry on a Saturday kind of thing. The trick is not to drink of course — once we figure that out we’ll be fine.

Indiependence music festival takes place August 2-4 in Mitchelstown, Co Cork.

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