Independent Venue Week gigs announced for Derry and Bangor

Help Musicians NI will present a trio of shows as part of the seven-day celebration including an all-star jazz line-up curated by David Lyttle


Three exclusive gigs have been announced by Northern Ireland's leading independent music charity Help Musicians NI (HMNI), as part of Independent Venue Week (IVW), a seven-day celebration of grassroots UK music venues held from January 29 - February 4.

Taking place in Derry~Londonderry and Bangor, the gigs will showcase some of Northern Ireland’s finest singer-songwriters, rock bands and will uniquely bring together five of the world’s most celebrated jazz musicians including one of Ireland’s most respected jazz musicians, the MOBO-nominated David Lyttle.

The Goat’s Toe in Bangor will feature rockers Empty Lungs, Life Goals, and Strange New Places on January 31, while in Derry the Nerve Centre hosts The Wood Burning Savages, ROE and Molly Sterling (who supported ROE on her recent tour) on February 2 and Bennigan's will provide the stage for the sole jazz show of this year's IVW in Northern Ireland. The notable event on February 4 sees the musician, producer and label owner amongst an international line-up of performers including Seamus Blake, Jesse van Ruller, Michael Janisch, and Meilana Gillard.

Christine Brown, Director of HMNI, commented: 'We are wholly committed to supporting NI artists as part of our successful launch in Northern Ireland in 2016 – and partnering with IVW takes that commitment a step further. We are delighted to curate gigs in Derry/Londonderry and Bangor for the first time and likewise proud that HMNI-supported artists The Wood Burning Savages and ROE are amongst the talent on show.

'A major fillip for HMNI is bringing world famous jazz artists to the IVW schedule. We are indebted to David Lyttle for his support in assembling such a stellar line-up and this is undoubtedly the first time such an international line-up will have graced Bennigans.'

David Lyttle

Lyttle said: 'I'm honoured to be curating and hosting this truly world-class celebration of jazz at one of Ireland's best venues. Bennigans is one of my favourite places to play worldwide and it really deserves to be part of Independent Venue Week. We are very grateful to Help Musicians NI for the opportunity to do this.'

Paul Connolly, The Wood Burning Savages frontman added: 'Independent venues are the backbone of new music, so for TWBS to be playing as part of Independent Venue Week under the banner of Help Musicians Northern Ireland fills us with pride.

'HMNI's support through the 3:3 scheme of us as a band and creative team is a catalyst towards achieving our road mapped goals of bringing honest, life-affirming music to a hungry audience throughout the UK and beyond. HMNI's approach to music as both an art form and very real force for positive societal change is groundbreaking.'

Full details on each gig can be found below.

Wednesday January 31: The Goat’s Toe (Rock Show) Bangor 

Ticket price: £5 - Doors: 9pm
Empty Lungs, Life Goals, and Strange New Places 

Friday February 2: Nerve Centre (Indie Show) Derry~Londonderry

Ticket price: £7 - Doors: 8pm
The Wood Burning Savages, ROE, and Molly Sterling 

Sunday February 4: Bennigans (Jazz Show) Derry~Londonderry

Ticket price: £10 ADV/ £12 DOOR - Doors: 5pm - Midnight
Curated by: David Lyttle
Featuring: Seamus Blake, Jesse van Ruller, Michael Janisch, David Lyttle, Meilana Gillard 
plus jam session with the John Leighton Trio