Author: Press Officer

‘Three C’s of Effective Songwriting Workshop’ with Brett Perkins – November 1st at IMRO

Date: Tuesday 1st November
Location: IMRO, Copyright House, Pembroke Row, Dublin 2. D02 HW59
Time: 10.00am – 4:00pm
Bookings: FREE Event | Booking Essential | Email: to reserve your place.

Songwriters at all levels of development are invited to attend this ‘Three C’s of Effective Songwriting Workshop’ with award winning, career songwriter Brett Perkins.

California born/Copenhagen based songwriter Brett Perkins has spent the past four decades developing and refining his own works while assisting others in doing the same.

Brett’s travelled to 29 countries thus far as a performer, presenter, guest speaker and artist consultant, with songs and vocals appearing on over twenty commercial releases, including the number one debut single ‘Breaking News’, written with Sony Denmark artist Mads Langer, numerous film and TV placements (MTV’s Road Rules, NBC Movie Of The Week, ‘Anna Pihl’, etc), awards (1st Prize, Great American Song Contest & Australian Song Contest, etc.) and widespread international airplay.

His ‘Getting Indie With It’ and ‘Three C’s Of Effective Songwriting’ workshops have been enthusiastically received at Berklee College of Music, The Songwriting School of Los Angeles, Idyllwild Arts Academy, IMRO/ Dublin, Royal Conservatory of Stockholm, NOPA/Oslo and beyond, and he regularly consults with established and aspiring artists on song development and career planning.

As founder of the Listening Room International Songwriter Retreats, now celebrating the 20th Anniversary year of event held annually in several countries, Brett’s introduced the concept of ’Community Through Co-Writing’ to over 2000 writers from around the globe since 2002, as well as founding the Copenhagen Songwriters Festival in 2009, Idyllwild Songwriters Festival in 2018 and Tuscany & Galway Songwriters Festivals in 2019, in a career of service built on earlier positions which include C.E.O./National Academy of Songwriters and Publisher/SongTalk Magazine.

Brett currently records and performs as a solo artist and with his Denmark based Americana band The Pawnshop Preachers.

*Attendees who wish to have a song of theirs workshopped during the day can drop their names into a hat upon arrival, which will be selected at random during the day. Live performance (no pre-recorded demos) please, for ease of working/re-working the song.

Founding Chairman of IMRO Brendan Graham honoured with Seán McCarthy Lifetime Achievement Award

The North Kerry village of Finuge gave a resounding welcome to musicians, songwriters and storytellers who travelled on the August Bank Holiday weekend to celebrate and compete in the 2022 Seán McCarthy Memorial Weekend, following a three year absence.

The festival of music, story and song proudly presented the Seán McCarthy Lifetime Achievement Award for song writing to former IMRO Chairman and founder member, world renowned songwriter and novelist Brendan Graham for his great contribution to the Irish songbook. Former Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht and Festival founder, Jimmy Deenihan made the prestigious presentation to Graham.

The man who penned hugely successful songs such as ‘You Raise Me Up’ and ‘Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears’, Brendan was accompanied by Róisín O’Reilly and musician Denis Carey who performed a range of Graham’s best known hits on Friday evening, 29th July in Teach Siamsa, Finuge, Co Kerry.

Brendan expressed his gratitude following the announcement. ‘I am deeply honoured to receive this year’s Seán McCarthy Lifetime Achievement Award. Given the high standard of the craft of song writing achieved by both Seán himself, with his classics like Shanagolden, Redhaired Mary and also reached by the previous recipient in 2019, Mickey McConnell with classics like Only Our Rivers Run Free and December 1914. These timeless songs have touched so many people who received them into their hearts. It is a spur for me to keep writing and to try to reach that higher ground of writing, which Seán and Mickey inhabit’.

McCarthy and Graham’s song writing gave a voice to the Irish Diaspora all over the world in tune with Ireland’s long history of emigration, cementing the link between Ireland and its people abroad.

This is Brendan’s third award in the past 12 months for song writing, including standing ovations following recent performances of ‘You Raise Me Up’ by Westlife and Andre Rieu in Dublin and at the Beijing 2022 Winter Paralympics closing ceremony.  Graham who’s first song was recorded 54 years ago, shared his delight in his song ‘Lullaby for the World’ shared on World Earth Day in April 2022 for a second year. He also wrote two Eurovision Song Contest winning songs, ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Kids’ by Paul Harrington & Charlie McGettigan, 1994 and ‘The Voice’ by Eimear Quinn 1996. Graham has worked with a diverse range of artists including Josh Groban, Westlife, IL Divo, Celtic Woman and Katherine Jenkins. The Nenagh native, now resides in County Mayo for many years.

Minister Martin extends popular Night-Time Economy Support Scheme

Minister Catherine Martin has today extended the Night-Time Economy Support Scheme with an additional investment of €1.4m bringing the total allocated to this Scheme to €4m. The Scheme will be extended until 12 noon on the 10th of August or until the funding is exhausted, whichever comes first.

The Night-Time Economy Support Scheme (NTESS) was launched on 22nd June providing funding of €2.6 million to pubs, nightclubs, cafés and other suitable licenced/unlicensed premises to support the provision of entertainment during off-peak times. The aim is to promote an increase in footfall in cities, towns and villages as well as providing artists with paying gigs and customers with a more alternative, diverse and inclusive night-time offering.

This initiative is in support of 2 recommendations in the Report of the Night-Time Economy Taskforce. The Scheme has proved popular with industry and venue owners willing to stimulate the Night-Time Economy in their areas and Minister Martin has now increased the funding available and reopened the Scheme.

Speaking today, Minister Martin said: “The level of interest and enthusiasm for the Night-Time Economy Support Scheme has been overwhelming. A whole host of businesses and venues operating in the Night-Time Economy have submitted innovative and exciting proposals to help stimulate night-time activity in our cities, towns and villages right across the country. I know many were disappointed when the Scheme closed but I am delighted now to be able to extend the Scheme with an additional €1.4million. I would like to thank the industry representative organisations for their support in promoting this Scheme.”

Minister Martin continued “This Scheme offers an opportunity for businesses and artists to work together to try something new and see what works for them and for their customers. I hope this will help to build a more sustainable night-time offering across the country.”

Applications can be made for the scheme through the dedicated application website from 12 noon today. Anyone who has submitted a full application and received an acknowledgement need not reapply.

Applications are invited under 2 separate strands:

Strand A: Licensed premises –pubs, restaurants and wine bars, nightclubs and other suitable licensed premises that operate in the Evening and Night-Time Economy, who want to trial a series of events/cultural activities (minimum of 4 events) during off peak times from Monday to Thursday (excluding weekends) from 6pm onwards.

Strand B: Unlicensed premises – cafés, including cafés that may have their premises in a retail outlet, dry bars, local galleries and other suitable non-licensed premises, who want to trial a series of events/cultural activities (minimum of 4 events) in the later evening or night-time hours from 6pm, with a commitment to open until at least 9pm in the evening, from Monday to Sunday.

The entertainment/cultural events must be of a participative or performance nature and can include but not limited to the following:

• live music, including electronic music, performance
• comedy nights
• dance either performed or a participative event
• literature or poetry nights
• theatrical productions or plays
• craft events
• art/photographic exhibitions

The Night-Time Economy Support Scheme has been developed in consultation with representatives from the night-time economy sector.

Samba Drumming Camp

Masamba Samba School are organising a week-long Samba Drumming Summer Camp in the Barbara Ward/Clonliffe and Croke Park Community Hall, Distillery Road, Dublin 3, starting on Monday 18thth July and running for 5 days.

Classes will take place between 2.30pm and 4.30pm each day, and all instruments, hearing protection and a light snack will be provided.

The week costs €15 for the five days, payable in full on day 1. Payments by cash, cheque, EFT or paypal.

As spaces are limited, we suggest you book in advance, either by calling Simeon at 087-2363813 or emailing

Labour & Why Not Her? to publish Broadcasting Bill ensuring greater diversity and inclusion on Irish radio

On July 7ththe team at Why Not Her? are meeting at Leinster House with Senator Marie Sherlock of the Labour Party to put forward an amended Broadcasting Bill (Gender, Cultures & Other Diversities) that ‘aims to retune Irish Radio’ towards gender parity and diversity.

Why Not Her?  are calling on all TD’s Senators, Ministers and Politicians to join in a cross-party initiative to support the new Bill that has been drafted. The collective invites everyone from the music scene and anyone who is a music lover to join them at 1pm this coming Thursday at the gates of Leinster House to support and ask the question Why Not Her?

Change is happening on our airwaves but at too slow a pace.  Responding to the publication of the Gender Disparity Report on music content on Irish airwaves, Labour Party Arts and Media spokesperson Marie Sherlock paid tribute to the work of the Why Not Her campaign.

“For the past three years, Why Not Her? has been holding up a mirror to broadcasters in Ireland on the disproportionate and low number of women’s voices on our airwaves. Today’s results show that over the past 12 months, change is possible by those willing to embrace greater diversity, equality and inclusion on their playlists. This is reflected with stations such as Spin FM, KCLR, Midwest, Northern Sound, 98FM, Clare FM and a number of RTÉ stations moving to ensure that at least 25% of airplay is devoted to women artists. However the reality is that for the majority of radio stations, there is a major lack of effort to showcase female-identifying artists. Over 3,200,000 people tune in radio in this country every day. As highlighted by Why Not Her, making it onto a playlist can be a life-changing experience, however, there are also great female artists who are simply not getting a platform to perform their work. We need to ensure there is a level playing field. We know that we have some brilliant emerging talent here in Ireland with Soulé, Tolü Makay, Cherry Dragon, Gemma Bradley and Denise Chaila and established talent such as Imelda May, and yet Why Not Her’s report reflects the disadvantage they are at relative to male artists. This coming Thursday at 1pm, the Labour Party will be publishing a bill to ensure greater representation of women’s voices both in spoken content and in music across all registered radio stations in this country. Change will not happen unless we push it.” –  Senator Marie Sherlock

Line-up for Vantastival 2022 Announced

Vantastival will return to Beaulieu House & Gardens, Drogheda, this Autumn, and a killer home-grown line-up has been announced. Kilkenny drummer ‘Rarely Seen Above Ground’ (R.S.A.G.) will bring his unique live show to the boutique festival on Friday 16th September, with feel-good Dublin folk/reggae band The Barley Mob, critically acclaimed songwriter Niamh Regan, and Irish/French folk duo Les SalAmandas also featuring on Friday’s bill.  Festival favourites Hermitage Green are lauded for their live shows and will bring their irresistible brand of folk rock to Vantastival on Saturday 17th September. They are joined on Saturday’s line-up by Derry alt-punk band The Wood Burning Savages and one of Ireland’s brightest emerging talents, the wonderful Susan O’Neill. With over 30 more acts due to perform, Vantastival will be an excellent outing for music lovers to round off the summer.

Following a pandemic-induced 2 year break from the festival format, organisers say this year’s event will be a beautifully intimate experience, smaller scale than previous Vantastival festivals with limited tickets. Since its inaugural event in 2010, Vantastival has been a uniquely family-friendly event, known for its super-friendly vibes and fantastically diverse line up. Other attractions include food stalls, festival traders, a walled garden full of kids’ activities, and many other fun and novel additions including the ‘Cully & Sully Campervan Cook-off’, ensuring that Vantastival has something for everyone. Campervans and caravans are welcome to park on site (right next to the arena) at no extra charge, but you don’t have to have a campervan to enjoy all that’s on offer and there is a dedicated tent campsite for those without vans. O’Hara’s Craft Beers will be available from the festival bar all weekend, while a ‘BYOB’ policy covering the whole festival site also means that even with price increases across the industry, Vantastival remains one of the country’s most affordable festivals.

Vantastival 2022 will take place on the 16th and 17th September 2022 in the beautiful grounds of Beaulieu House, on the banks of the Boyne just outside Drogheda. The festival is supported by the Department of Tourism, Culture Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media and IMRO. Tickets are on sale now from Eventbrite and

2-day camping – €120

Saturday tickets – €70 (includes camping)

Campervans – no charge and no ticket needed

booking fees apply

See for more details.



Inside I’m Dancing – New Release by Mike Hanrahan (Stockton’s Wing)

Mike has been a central figure in Irish music industry for over four decades as writer and musician with the ground breaking contemporary Irish music band Stockton’s Wing, as producer/writer with the legendary Ronnie Drew, as an advocate on the front line for songwriters rights and in recent years as a very successful professional cook of all things organic and author of his critically acclaimed shortlisted memoir ‘Beautiful Affair, A Journey in music, food and friendship’  published by Harper Collins. He is back at home now in his box room writing new songs or touring, as a solo artist, with Stockton’s Wing, Eleanor Shanley and the odd gig with Leslie Dowdall.

He has created his first full animated music video to accompany the release.

A new album with his friend and producer Gavin Glass ‘Songs from the box room’ is due later this year.

On Inside I’m Dancing. “Believe it or not I started writing this song twelve years ago. I had just about dragged myself out of an emotional bear pit and I wanted to mark the transition. Then an exciting career in food unfolded, consuming all my creative energy. After returning to the music a couple of years ago I was somehow drawn back to this song. It seemed to me it deserved completion. All those years later and the message was more powerful than ever. There is nothing like reaching that magical space where you feel comfortable enough to say – “I’m kickin off my shoes to dance this night away cause inside, inside I’m dancing. I am also delighted to present my first animation video. I love animation with songs as it allows you to delve deeper into the layers writing. This is my first attempt, but I absolutely loved the entire process.”

Produced and arranged by Gavin Glass and Mike Hanrahan at Orphan Studios Wexford is out on June 24th 2022


New Release from Last Survivor – The Wasp – Out June 24

When recording as part of the super electro trio ‘The Japanese Popstars’, Decky Hedrock worked with and remixed artists such as Robert Smith (The Cure), Beyonce, Depeche Mode, M83 and Daft Punk, and that fusion of artists has led to Last Survivors sound but before that he was topping the charts in various countries with his own brand of big beats under the moniker Hedrock Valley Beats.

Now ‘The Wasp’ is him going back to his dance music roots, fusing Synthwave with breakbeat and creating an up-tempo party rager that is very radio friendly!

Calling in their combined talents, 26 year old Cara Molloy and singer/songwriter Mick McCallion, the band have created an absolute banger that even your granny can sing along to.

On the b-side there is the more chilled downtempo space oddity called ‘Space (The Love Theme)’which balances off the package with a Moby-Essie vibe.

Actually inspired by the 1980s Flash Gordon soundtrack by Queen, merged with space synths and aggressive beats, this flip side is unique and makes the package quite special.

This comes out 24th June on Riot Synth Riot Records.

Dance with Danger, 4th single from Singer-Songwriter and Dancer Dora Gola

Dance with Danger is Dora Gola’s fourth and most daring single. Dora and collaborator Darragh Keary take bolder moves into the terrain of gospel and techno with explosive choruses where Dora unleashes the full arsenal of her vocal prowess.

Like the singles predecessor ‘Jestem’ melds Polish and English seemingly without pretence. The song feels on the edge of emotional breakdown and conquering the impossible. Beautiful lush synthesisers sweep through techno grooves that send the listener to the dizzying cliff heights of adventure and danger.

Album “Dance with Danger” due Autumn 2022.

Named as “Album to Look Forward To” by Tony Clayton-Lea of The Irish Times

Named as Hot for 2022 by Hot Press Magazine (February 2022)
Instagram: doragola
Twitter: doragola

‘Dance with Danger’ is available from 17th June 2022

BIMM Institute Dublin and IMRO Announce Foundation Diploma in Music Business Scholarship 2022

BIMM Institute Dublin and IMRO are delighted to announce the fifth BIMM Institute Dublin IMRO Diploma in Music Business Scholarship which will offer one student the opportunity to study on this year-long Foundation Diploma course free of charge. Prospective students can apply for the scholarship by submitting an enquiry to the team at

In 2018, BIMM Institute Dublin, part of Europe’s most connected and successful music college, added to its range of courses by launching the BIMM Institute Dublin Foundation Diploma in Music Business course which has been a game changer for the Irish music scene. This a part-time course designed to offer students a practical skillset precisely designed with future entrepreneurism and employment in mind including Music Promotion and Marketing, Artist Management, Tour Management, Physical and Digital Music Distribution, e-commerce in the Music Industry, Music Publishing and Recording, Live Music Events and Touring. The course is ideal for those with no experience of the industry and who wish to use it as a foundation for further study or entrepreneurship.

“IMRO is delighted to continue its partnership with BIMM Dublin on its Music Business Foundation Diploma course. It is critical that we support and nurture the next generation of creative thinkers and industry professionals. BIMM graduates are to be found in every sector of the music industry in Ireland which is testament to the quality of the tuition, experiences and industry connections that students are exposed to during their time at this renowned institution”  –  Keith Johnson, Director of Marketing & Membership, IMRO.

“IMRO is a vital organisation within the Irish music industry and has been for many years. It always displays unwavering support for Irish artists, both new and established, in their role of collection society, education provider and lobbyist for greater development and investment in homegrown talent. Partnering with IMRO on our Music Business Foundation Diploma scholarship makes perfect sense for us, as no one cares more about the business of music in Ireland, than IMRO” – BIMM Institute Dublin College Principal, Alan Cullivan.

“I was so lucky to have been awarded the scholarship to study the diploma in Music Business with BIMM this year. Financially it hugely took the pressure off me, as well as giving me the confidence I needed to further pursue my career in Artist Management. While I’ve been working as an artist manager for several years, undertaking this study and diploma, only furthered my knowledge of music business, and solidified my love for my work. The tutors are all experienced members of the industry, and we learned so much from them, as well as the brilliant guest speakers that were brought into lectures – many which I knew from the industry already, or else new ones I now have a base connection with because of it. I’m so thankful to IMRO for selecting me for this scholarship at BIMM Institute. I really enjoyed my time studying there!” – 2020’s scholarship winner, Laura McCabe.

The BIMM group is the largest and leading provider of music education in Europe and have taken raw talents and turned them into industry professionals, earning a living doing what they love. The BIMM Institute Dublin Diploma in Music Business will be delivered at BIMM Institute Dublin, Irelands most vibrant and diverse community of musicians providing unique opportunities for collaborative student learning, as well as direct connectivity to an industry that will enhance future career prospects.

This course, like all qualifications at BIMM Institute Dublin, are delivered by tutors with experience working at the highest levels of the music business, which ensures that the delivery of this qualification will be distinctive, relevant, and uniquely cutting edge.

For more information on BIMM Institute Dublin visit

Application forms for the scholarship can be requested via

The closing date for scholarship applications is Friday, 12 August at 5:30pm.

Find BIMM Institute Dublin on Facebook or on Twitter: @BIMMDublin.

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