Alex James of Blur let the cat out of the bag on the entente in an interview recently, with the recent pally-walliness apparently originating at a joint performance last month at the Royal Albert Hall for a gig in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust. Hot Press reports that Johnny Depp has been singing the praises of Pogues singer Shane MacGowan. “He’s a special being. To me, he’s one of the most important poets of the 20th century,” the actor told the BBC recently. The unlikely duo know each other for decades and recently worked together on the score of The Lone Ranger. Daft Punk have just released ‘Lose Yourself to Dance’, a second single from the album Random Access Memories, and like its predecessor, Pharrell Williams provides the vocals. Finally, a minute’s silence for Jon Brookes, the 44-year-old drummer with the Charlatans who passed away earlier this week, three years after being diagnosed with a brain tumour.
This weekend’s biggie is Eminem at Slane, and promoters MCD have announced hourly buses to the gig from Customs House Quay running from 11am to 5pm. Randy Newman has cancelled his gig in Dublin on Monday due to pneumonia. After last year’s rowdiness and bad publicity, the marketing team behind Arthur’s Day will be anxious that the Sept 26 event gets headlines for the right reasons this time around. They’re already impressing with a decent line-up for the concerts, with the likes of the Script, Bobby Womack, Emeli Sandé and Janelle Monae (right) all involved. Most of the gigs are free but some of the bigger names will appear at 10 events in Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Belfast, with tickets going on sale on Sept 4. Other gigs announced this week include the Orb on Nov 16 at the Button Factory in Dublin and a testimonial for Philip Chevron, the former Pogues and Radiators guitarist who is suffering from terminal cancer. The lineup for the Aug 24 event will include Horslips, Shane MacGowan and Paul Cleary. The Guinness Cork Jazz Festival has announced another impressive double-bill, with Bilal headlining a gig with the Soul II Soul Sound System. Bilal is a well-travelled vocalist who has collaborated in recent years with the likes of Robert Glasper and Beyonce. Also in Cork, jazz-funk legend Lonnie Liston Smith is at the Pavilion on Aug 23, while big-name British DJ Trevor Nelson is at Havana Browns tonight.
The lineup at Triskel Christchurch in Cork from Sunday includes Frances Ha, the latest offering from The Squid and The Whale director Noah Baumbach. In Dublin, the IFI has announced Aidan Gillen will attend a preview screening of Mister John on Sept 17, with director Joe Lawlor also present for a Q+A.
BBC Four hosts a repeat of all three episodes of the excellent Punk Britannia series tonight from 9pm. Peter Capaldi narrates the story of the seminal 1970s musical movement, while talking heads include Paul Weller, John Lydon and Jerry Dammers. Dance fans should check out Pina on Sky Arts 1 on Monday at 9pm. Wim Wenders’ film documents the choreography of the late Pina Bausch, the German innovator who died in 2009, a few days before filming was due to begin.
The Crawford Art Gallery in Cork has announced it will host Robert Ballagh’s exhibition, Seven, from Sept 16. It is comprised of seven of the Dublin artist’s self-portraits and seven portraits of political and cultural leaders. On the same week, IMMA will open the first major retrospective of the work in Ireland of Leonora Carrington, entitled The Celtic Surrealist.