Scene + Heard: The most played artist on Spotify and all the latest music news

The Marquee in Cork dominated the gig news this week, with a string of announcements for what is expected to be the final year at the Monahan Road venue before the site is developed

Scene + Heard: The most played artist on Spotify and all the latest music news

MUSIC NEWS: Who is the most streamed artist of the decade on Spotify? Apparently, it’s Drake, with an incredible 28bn streams on the service. He does miss out on the most streamed song spot to ‘Shape Of You’ by Ed Sheeran.

GIG WISE: The Marquee in Cork dominated the gig news this week, with a string of announcements for what is expected to be the final year at the Monahan Road venue before the site is developed. Picks of the bunch include Sinead O’Connor (June 5), The National (June 8) and Orbital (June 20). With a decent roster of acts also playing Musgrave Park in June, it looks like being one the busiest summer ever on Leeside in terms of music offerings.

Away from the Marquee, we also heard news of other acts heading to Cork Opera House in the near future: Lankum on St Patrick’s Day, March 17; and 10cc, on May 30 (also playing Vicar Street, May 29). Meanwhile, the popularity of Hermitage Green is underlined by the fact that they are half way through a four-night run at St Luke’s.

Tickets went on sale this morning for two biggies at 3Arena, Dublin, next year: Dua Lipa on June 18-19, and Stormzy on Sept 8.

FILM TIPS: For fans of Star Wars, the countdown is on to the release of the latest instalment, The Rise of Skywalker, on Dec 20. The truly dedicated can get a first look when many cinemas roll it out at 12.05am on the night of Thursday 19.

Set a year after The Last Jedi, it brings the Skywalker trilogy to an end. Among this weekend’s offerings is Ordinary Love, starring Liam Neeson and Lesley Manville as a longterm couple whose relationship faces some serious tests when she’s diagnosed with breast cancer.

Liam Neeson
Liam Neeson

Also on offer is Motherless Brooklyn, a neo-noir film set in New York in the 1950s which has been both directed and written by its star Edward Norton. The award of three stars by most critics suggests it’s solid rather than spectacular.

Blue Story has probably benefitted from the publicity around its banning from some cinemas in the UK following fights at several screenings. The gritty drama deals with the friendship between two young boys from different areas.

From Sunday, Triskel in Cork has two decent documentaries: A Dog Called Money, from Irish director Seamus Murphy, follows the making of PJ Harvey’s last album; and Meeting Gorbachev, a film about the famed Soviet leader, by Werner Herzog.

ON THE TELLY: Trouble finding a film to watch on Netflix? Perhaps its related to the fact reported by Streaming Observer that the service has 40% fewer films than it had five years ago.

Apparently, that’s partly because Disney and HBO have been holding their output for their own recently-launched streaming services. It underlines the importance of Netflix creating its own content, such as the excellent Marriage Story, starring Adam Driver and Scarlett Johansson which becomes available today.

Scarlett Johansson
Scarlett Johansson

On terrestrial TV, a documentary to watch for on RTÉ on Monday is Wonder Walls: The Story of Irish Street Art, looking at political murals in the North, the Waterford Walls project, Maser’s work in Dublin, etc.

ALL AND SUNDRY: The 2 Johnnies have been a hugely popular Irish podcast, and head for their biggest live appearance yet when they play the Marquee in Cork on May 30.

Scouser comedian John Bishop has also been added to the non-music element at the big tent on June 18. Theatre fans in Cork may be interested in SHOW, at TDC in the Triskel in Cork over the weekend. It provides free readings of various plays that are still at a development phase.

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