Music Exhibition

Northern Ireland's rich musical heritage on show

The Belfast Music Exhibition, at the Oh Yeah Music Centre takes visitors on a unique journey – from Ruby Murray to Snow Patrol, by way of Stiff Little Fingers, Dana and Clodagh Rogers, via The Undertones, The Divine Comedy, Nadine Coyle and Henry McCullough.

The exhibition tells the story of the glorious achievements and diverse musical talents that Northern Ireland has produced over the years, and have helped heap international acclaim on the province.

A series of story boards plot the history of the Northern Ireland music scene from folk music to Snow Patrol, while audio-visual displays showcases performances by the likes of Them, The Undertones, Stiff Little Fingers and Ruby Murray, and a ‘Legends’ wall hails the great achievers in local music.

The exhibition also features a wide range of diverse and unique memorabilia from the local music business and the personalities involved in it – including platinum discs, badges, vintage stage gear, lyric sheets, film footage, ticket stubs and backstage passes.

Among the highlights are rare articles from The Undertones and Stiff Little Fingers, the Fender guitar on which Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol wrote ‘Run’ and ‘Chasing Cars’, artefacts from the historic Maritime Hotel – and the dress worn by Dana when she won the Eurovision Song Contest in March 1970.

Other exhibits include:

- the sequined jacket that Henry McCullough wore on tour with Paul McCartney and Wings;
- a guitar belonging to Andy Cairns from Therapy?, that was smashed on stage at the Mandela Hall, Belfast, in 1992
- gold, silver and platinum discs celebrating the achievements of Snow Patrol, Ash and David Holmes
- punk jackets and boots, as worn by The Outcasts
- autographs of Ruby Murray, The Undertones, Horslips and Them
- a vintage street sign of Cyprus Avenue, made famous in a Van Morrison song
- rare records from Phil Coulter, Stiff Little Fingers, The Undertones and more
- David McWilliams’ first guitar
- Sam Mahood’s old stage silks from the days of the Maritime Hotel, and membership cards from the club.

New material continues to arrive at the Oh Yeah centre, which will help to ensure that the content of the exhibition continually changes.

To watch an exclusive video from the launch of the Belfast Music Exhibition click here.

The Belfast Music Exhibition is open Mon-Fri 12-3pm and Sun 2-6pm, at the Oh Yeah Music Centre, 15-22 Gordon Street, Belfast, BT1 2LG.