Cork rocks: 96 gigs, 1 night

And the top story this hour — a radio news reader has announced ambitious plans to stage 96 gigs on one night in Cork to promote Ireland’s vibrant live music scene.

Cork rocks: 96 gigs, 1 night

Pearse McCarthy, who reads hourly bulletins for Cork’s 96fm and 103fm, said he hopes his 96/1 event in August will showcase the talent in the region and bring it to a wider audience.

“The idea behind it is to have 96 original bands or artists play on one night in Cork City,” he said.

“The hope is to have 50% of the acts from Cork and the rest from around the country.

“To date we have 27 venues on board and part of the musical trail.”

Mr McCarthy is heavily involved in the original music scene in Cork.

His music management company, PPM Management, runs a showcase gig called The Live Room every month in The Roundy, and he manages Cork bands Lennoko and Audible Joes.

He also hosts Cork County Matters on Irish TV.

He said the idea for 96/1 was borne out of his frustration that not enough people get to experience original live music act, with gigs confined to about five or six city venues.

“I decided what was needed was a mini music festival right in the centre of the city — 96 bands, in one night,” he said.

Dozens of pubs have signed up to be part of the festival trail, including several that don’t normally stage live music on a regular basis.

The only requirement of the venues is the use of their own PA system, and a sound engineer, if one is available.

“This benefits all, in that the pubs and people get to experience, for one night only, a sample of the talent that is right on their doorstep,” he said.

“It also benefits the band in that it opens them up to a new audience and venue.”

There are also plans for daytime street performances by some of the bands performing that night.

The 96/1 festival, supported by Murphy’s and the Vintners Federation of Ireland will benefit affiliated charity, iCan, the Irish Children’s Arthritis Network, and is being supported by Hear the Noise, Playground of Dreams, the CIT Music Society, and media partners, Cork’s 96fm and 103fm.

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