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We were impressed with the effort people put into the entries, and for that reason we thought, how good would a post which tells people about great live acts and why they were so good would be as a read. So here we will just post the first name of the person who mailed us. Here’s around 20 of the entries we got, maybe you might be swayed to go see a band live because of these words.
I’ll open proceedings (though i wasnt in the draw) i had to battle with many gigs ive been to, Muse @ The Olympia in 2005, U2 @ Croke Park first time around, Glam Rock Cops at Castlepalooza. All amazing gigs for their own reasons, but i think the one i’ve detailed below stands slightly above the rest.
Aidan – The Darkness – Vicar Street
This gig was a little special, i’m probably one of the few people who “got” The Darkness thing and still appreciate there music and video’s and live show to this day. I went to see them in Vicar Street just before “Get your hand’s off my woman” sent them global, so they went from Vicar Street to Festival headliners in a very short time after this, they were never seen in a venue as intimate again.
On the night, They put on an absolutely electric show, for me Permission to Land is awesome 80′s glam rock fun from start to finish. each song they added a little to with live show changes, the crowd heaved as the gig rocked through the set. I was front and centre and as “Love is only a Feeling” started there was a big crush, me at the centre of it, i would only have been 18 at the time and not used to big crushes at gig’s and the pressure caused me to pass out. An EMT dragged me out and to the back of the gig where i was brought around, when i stood up, Justin Hawkins was playing the Solo to “Love is only a feeling” on the shoulders of a bouncer who was walking him around the side and back of the crowd and back up the other side. Literally went right past me playing the solo, got back on stage and continued with the show. Despite the passing out it was possibly the best gig ive ever seen, such a breaking band in a small venue with the presence and flair of the best in the business. It may not be everyone’s thing, but for me it was Epic.
Stephen – Presidents of the United States of America
Best live performance I have ever seen by anyone was The Presidents Of The United States Of America in the Templebar Music Centre….when it was called that. The place was packed..everyone was singing and dancing all the way through their set and there was no gobshites getting in the way of anything. Security there were on point at all times and since the TBMC venue was so small, they decided that they had to open the fire doors to let air in. Hands down the best gig I have ever been to.
Mark – Michael Winslow stand up
My favourite gig was one of the Bulmers comedy gigs in the Tivoli Theatre when i saw Micheal Winslow do a stand up. I knew him as Jones from police academy and always figured the voices were put on. The gig blew me away, the man was extremely talented and fantastically funny. He managed to keep the entire crowd smiling for every minute and it was a fantastically magical experience.
As the gig ended we sat in the bar for a drink and Micheal and his wife sat down at a table and announced they would sign autographs for people along with allowing photos to be taken. We were one of the last up and as i sat down for the photo i mentioned i’d love to buy himself and his wife a drink to say thanks. He agreed and then the 4 of us sat there til the small hours chatting and having a good laugh. By far one of the best gigs and experiences i have had. I still have the photo and his autograph at home
Ciara – The Flaming Lips
The Flaming Lips are amazing live! i’ve seen them do the whole festival thing, and they’re definately the right band for the job. Last year for my friends birthday I saw them at bowery ballroom in New York City for an audience of less than 5000, that was SICK!!! they did bohemian rhapody karaoke sytle and you could barely hear the band. Amazing!
Declan – Guns N Roses / Faith No More / My Little Fun House
My first ever live concert and oh what a gig..Faith No More and Irish band My little Fun house supporting Guns ‘n Roses in Slane 1992. The weather was good and the music was better. U2 even sent a crate of 40-year-old Irish whiskey and a barrel of Guinness for the band.
Fiona – Bon Jovi
It definitely has to be Bon Jovi – I know it’s a bit cliché, but here is the story!!!
I am now in my mid thirties, and when I was in my teens, loved the “old style” Bon Jovi. Played it all day and night and drove my family crazy. Turned out my younger sister (10 years younger) was a bit influenced, so when she was in her early teens, I brought her to her first Bon Jovi concert in Dublin and I was so proud… they rocked. Years on and living back at home with my parents and now my daughter, who caught the bug from my sister, the cycle started to repeat itself and my sister (now in her early twenties) is taking my daughter (in her early teens) to Bon Jovi concerts. And again they rocked!!!!
Best band ever live. Jon gives all he’s got to make sure everyone feels like they matter. The best duo I have ever heard is Jon and Richie doing acoustics – just the two of them sitting down at the edge of the stage and playing guitars. – best sound in the world. They have been loved in our house for the past 25 years, by me, my little sister and my daughter. (PS I have another daughter now who is 3 and already knows the words to “Living on a Prayer) and is called Faith. Thanks Bon Jovi
Avril – Billie Joel and George Michael in Croke Park
The best act I’ve ever seen was I say my very first concert in Croke park back when I was 8. I saw Billie Joel and George Michael Live it was amazing I was dancing around like a hippy child with my patents. On the way down my dad found 60 quid on the path. I was brought to mc donalds after, which was a rare treat. Had the best time ever I can still remember the music, the crowd and the beautiful summers evening. Oh and billie Joel threw me a rose ha ha.
Elaine – Wyclef Jean – Ambassador Dublin 2002
The best act that I ever saw live was Wyclef Jean in the Ambassador, Dublin on November 20, 2002.
First of all it was a free concert but that had nothing to do with why it was so good, purely an added bonus!!
From the moment Wyclef came on stage he was up for a good night and wanted to give his Irish fans an amazing night and he definitely delivered on that! He played so many songs from his own playlist, the Fugees and many many more and the crowd interaction was second to none.
He then brought The Edge on stage to duet with him for a few songs, jaw dropping to say the least. He went at least an hour and a half over the scheduled performance time (when do you ever see a performer do that in this day and age) purely because he was having such a great time and the audience were loving it!!! An amazing gig, definitely my favourite so far!!
Dainiux – U2 @ Croke Park
U2 are one of the best bands in the world and the show in Croke Park was a visual spectacle with great music. They consistently come back with excellent new music. One of my thoughts as I left Croke Park was will it be another four years before they come back again? I sincerely hope not.
Gerry – The Go Between @ The Trinity Ball
The best Act I’ve ever seen was The Go Betweens in Trinity college the year they played the Trinity Ball.
I’m just so nostalgic for that band and that time in the mid to late Eighties, Sigh !
Diarmuid – Rage Against the Machine @ Oxegen 2009
Best act I have seen live is Rage Against The Machine at Oxegen last year.
The reason…..the crowd were excellent, the energy they displayed on stage was electric and I was locked so those three reasons combined made that show the best show ever for me!!
Catriona – Elbow @ Oxegen 2009
The Best act I have seen live without a doubt was Elbow live at Oxegen 2009. The rain was pouring down on us as Elbow took the stage. The song ‘One Day Like This’ Starts. The soaked and miserable crowd throws their hands into the air. When he started to sing the lyrics ”Cause holy cow, I love your eyes. And only now I see the light. Yeah, lying with me half-awake. Oh, anyway, it’s looking like a beautiful day” The rain stopped and the sun broke through the clouds. And even though it was only for duration of the song it lifted everyones mood. It was the most memorable performance I have ever seen!!!
Laima – Cathy Davey @ The Olympia Theatre
It was the best gig – both intimate and electric at times! I absolutely loved it, the set list was brilliant, and the experience was unforgettable.
Maria – Take That @ Croke Park – June 09
The best act I’ve seen LIVE is Take That in Croke Park in June 2009 – they were amazing and also had The Script supporting them… Part of the reason I loved the concert was because I had been made redundant and been dumped by my ex during the same week and was feeling kinda sorry for myself. Some of my wonderful friends rustled up a spare ticket for me and made me remember that life is good, bumpy, but good
Chris – Fleetwood Mac @ The O2 2009
The Best Act I have ever seen was “Fleetwood Mac” in the O2 in 2009.
Quite simply I’ve grown up on the Mac and I’ve been lucky enough that a lot of my close friends share this love. To be honest, I never thought that I would ever get to see them live, and when the chance came around parting with €100+ quid was nothing, even with Christine Mcvie absent. A small group of us met in a pub beforehand, and I was very conscious not to overdo it, I was literally in a cold sweat in anticipation.
I remember being nervous walking up to the gig, suspecting that something had to go wrong, literally a gig I had been waiting for my entire life. Sitting in my chair, I was bouncing in my seat, I don’t ever remember so much energy running through me at any one time. There was a sheer sense of relief when it started and every song evoked a variety of feelings and a million memories. There were songs that you sang to, the ones we all know, and then the ones that took your breath away. I have never seen an entire crowd sit in complete silence and listen to songs like “Big Love” and “Never going back again.”
They sounded as fresh as the first moment you “get” them, but with the familiarity that made you know you were listening to something timeless, a gig you will tell your children about. It’s the kind of gig you wake up for the next week thinking about, the one you talk to death with people who were there, make people who weren’t there jealous. I’ve been to a huge amount of gigs, but that is definitely one that the kids will hear about,as I pass on my copy of “Rumors.”
Mark – Paul McCartney @ The O2 2009
I had been waiting all my life to see Paul McCartney. When you waiting so long for something like this, the reality can often be an anti-climax, but not this time. It was fantastic – from the first song (Magical Mystery Tour) to the last (Sergeant Pepper’s). A packed house was enthralled by highlights from The Beatles, Wings and Paul’s solo career. For almost 3 hours we were treated to a masterclass from a legend with the best songbook in the business.
Never to be forgotten – One of the days of which you know you will say more than once ‘I was there’.
Laura – Westlife @ Croke Park 2010
I have to say Westlife after their gig in Croke Park on Saturday it just blew me away.
They are such lovely guys, they brought their kids out on stage and done a beautiful tribute to Nicky and Kian’s dad’s who passed away recently. It was such a moving and beautiful show. They are such talented lovely lads.
So proud to see how far they’ve come. Home grown talent. 85,000 singing along with them. Go Westlife:)
Steve – The Frames @ Vicar Street
The best gig I’ve ever been at has to have been The Frames at Vicar Street about a year ago. They’re a fantastic band and it was our first time seeing them live. They’ve been going for ages – before Glen Hansard was in The Commitments, even – and have a VERY loyal fanbase. The atmosphere at the gig you could cut with a knife, the band feed off the crowds energy and fed it right back to the crowd, it was amazing – like a huge crowd of best friends having a party. Definitely no. 1 on my gig list.
Jenny – Garth Brooks
Garth Brooks was the best act that I ever saw live! I had really bad seats but Garth Brooks does this thing at concerts where he leaves the front row empty and then before his show begins he selects people from the nosebleed sections and let’s them sit in the front row. I was one of those lucky people when I saw him in Halifax, Nova Scotia in 1996. Besides that stroke of luck, it was definitely the best concert I have ever been to! Even though he was promoting an album, he played all his hit songs and then for his encore he played about 10 cover songs like American Pie and You may be Right so everyone was singing along to every song. I read once that Garth Brooks has a degree in marketing- I believe it! If you weren’t a Garth Brooks fan before one of his concerts, you certainly would be after seeing him live!
Jaki – Wallis Bird
The best performer I’ve seen live has to be Wallis Bird! She’s a bungle of energy when she’s on stage and takes you from a rage of emotions. One minute you might be on the verge of tears and the next you could be laughing like a maniac.
She always treats her fans to an amazing show and the odd stage dive. I hope ye can get to see her sometime!
Rachel – Springbreak 80′s Band
Have to say one of the best bands around are Springbreak 80′s band – they play all 80′s power ballads – Journey (before it was a Glee song ) being my favourite, the band also dress up in 80′s gear and have a Cocktail set as their backdrop !
The first time I went to one of their gigs I was totally overawed by their groupies – they all dress up, I saw Michael Jackson, Tom Cruise, Whitney Heuston and lots of other 80′s pop and film stars, some of the outfits brought me right back to when I was a teenager – it was such a laugh I felt silly being in my ordinary clothes
I have since seen them again at a wedding and they had the bride up on stage with a pair of mirror sunglasses singing “Dancing in the Dark”, I have a photo but she would prob murder me if I post it
Honestly the tickets are usually around €25 – thats the best value gig ever as you get the music, the show and the groupies and the best laugh ever – I would recomend anyone that was an 80′s teenager to go to see them as they will being back so many memories
Noel – Lady GaGa
The best act I’ve seen live is Lady Gaga. She simply brings the world of pop to a new level, and her stage dramatics are simply unexplainable. The theatrics and costumes involved are out of this world, and it’s like she’s returned from the future to grace us with our presence. I loved her performance so much that I’m returning yet again to see her in October!
Rebecca – Keane @ The O2 – 2008
The best act I’ve seen live is Keane at the 02 in 2008 and this is because the crowd made the gig electrifying!! I was right up against the barrier and could almost touch Tom Chaplin!!! AMAZING!!!
Kev – Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band
The best live act that I’ve seen is Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band. The man is 60 years old, yet he still comes out and plays for 3 hours! He doesn’t just stand still on stage the man is the most energetic 60 year old I’ve ever seen.
He runs, jumps and gyrates all night long. One of the nights I seen him in Dublin and the rain was pouring down, but being The Boss, he brought his funny eccentric self. Just to show it, he opened up with a Creedence Clearwater Revival cover of ‘Who’ll Stop the Rain’.
But what made the night so magical was half way through his set, he began to play ‘Waitin on a Sunny Day’.
And like a sign from above, the clouds parted and the rain stopped. (It really happened!)
But the show certainly did not, he was just getting started as The Boss took requests from the crowd running down to the fans to take signs and banners they had brought and began to go through them. Busting out his big hits such as ‘Thunder Road’, ‘Born To Run’ and ‘Dancing in the Dark’. Finishing up the night with an explosive cover of ‘Twist and Shout’, which had me sing “Shake it up Baby NOW!!!” all the way home. It can’t be topped.
Susan – Escala
Well, it has to be Escala, the electric string quartet. They were amazing on Britain’s Got Talent 2008. The atmosphere was indeed electric. There are four girls in Escala and everyone plays a stringed electric instrument and the girls looked stunning. Phenomenal performance by Escala and they got a standing ovation. They were just awesome and left me with goosebumps all over. An excellent band and definitely a ‘best performer’ and rare talent. They definitely left you wanting more. Would die to see them in concert.
Deirdre – Traces @ The Olympia
The best act I’ve seen live was Traces at the Olympia. The performers were acrobats with perfect timing. The music was paced to match the performance. The show even had a story with lots of props to show off the actors range of talents.
Paula – Rod Stewart @ Thomond Park 2009
The best gig I went to was Rod Stewart in Thomond Park last summer. I thought it would be full of old people, but in fact it was fantastic & the man was able to sing for ages . Best part was my boyfriend got the tix for free!
Lorraine – Cher
The best concert I was ever at was Cher! Wow, what a performance!!!! I initially didn’t want to go but the person who was to go with my sister backed out at the last minute, so rather than letting the tickets go to waste I went with her. I’m so so glad I did! It was on her farewell tour. She constantly changed her outfits, the stage performers were absolutely amazing (acrobats & dancers) She had a replica of a full size elephant which she came out on at the start of the concert. The singing was brilliant. Pity she has retired now because I definitely would go see her again given half a chance.