Lonely Planet Writer

Dublin is hosting a Vinyl celebration this weekend

Ireland is a country that is famous for its close relationship to music, with the small island nation punching well above its weight in terms of artistic output and appetite. And now, the capital city of Dublin is preparing for a brand new cultural event that will see special musical guests from all over the world showcasing and discussing iconic records that span the decades.

Vinyl record lovers are seen in Gdansk, Poland on 17 March 2018 Visitors buy, sell and exchange thusands of vinyls during the vinyl market in Galeria Metropolia in Gdansk. (Photo by Michal Fludra/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
The event will include pop-up record shops, complete with limited edition, hard to find pressings. Image by NurPhoto/Getty Images

Taking place from 5 – 7 May at the Royal Hospital Kilmainham in Dublin, VINYL is a music event with a difference. Described as “an immersive theatre of the mind that celebrates the rich history and enduring legacy of vinyl, its landmark recordings, key personnel, and the ground-breaking labels and studios that cultivated such talent”, VINYL will feature specially programmed talks, panel discussions, curated collections, music performances, album playbacks, art exhibits, pop-up stores, signings, and equipment showcases.

“We don’t consider it a music showcase as such. It’s a music culture event. An intimate gathering with some of the most interesting artists old and new, local and from overseas.  Add the key creatives behind these artists such as the label bosses, record producers, designers and photographers, and this becomes a truly special event. We don’t believe there has been anything quite like it before,” VINYL organiser David Bell told Lonely Planet Travel News.

Snow Patrol  set to discuss their new album with Edith Bowman.   Image by VINYL Dublin

High profile musicians, songwriters, actors and established industry figures that will be in attendance include Chrissie Hynde, Bob Geldof, Snow Patrol, Shane MacGowan, Martin Freeman, Billy Bragg, Tracey Thorn, Geoff Barrow and Cillian Murphy. Special events include a conversation with record producer Flood (U2, Depeche Mode, Nick Cave), while veteran songwriter and musician Donovan will chat about a life in music, including his relationship with The Beatles and the timeless appeal of songs such as Mellow Yellow and Hurdy Gurdy Man.

The event is taking place in the unique venue of The Royal Hospital Kilmainham in Dublin. Image by William Murphy / CC BY 2.0

Discussing his personal history with music, especially the event’s namesake, the vinyl record, Snow Patrol’s Jonny Quinn talked exclusively to Lonely Planet Travel News about the band’s forthcoming appearance. “I am very excited to take part in VINYL, having worked in a record shop and growing up eagerly waiting for Saturday to buy a seven inch single. I think VINYL Dublin is a unique event which I’m sure will resonate”. Across the three days of VINYL there will be a Tower Records pop-up store stocked with the back catalogues of the various attendees, along with hard-to-source special editions and books.

“We are on a journey with VINYL. We chose to start in Dublin because the city has a wonderful reputation for having the best music fans. Also, there is an incredible musical history to Dublin and Ireland that we wanted to tap into and celebrate. Our future plans for Vinyl include events in Glasgow, London, Berlin, New York, Los Angeles and other great music capitals. We hope to make Dublin an annual event too,” David said.

Day tickets for VINYL start at €49.50 (£43). More information on the event, including a full programme, is available at the official website.