Psychotic Reaction.Trouble Pilgrims live at The Kilkenny Roots Festival 2015

Psychotic Reaction.Trouble Pilgrims The Kilkenny Roots Festival-Photo Layla Bell

Psychotic Reaction.Trouble Pilgrims at The Kilkenny Roots Festival-Photo Layla Bell

Pilgrim’s Progress having been invited to play the renowned Kilkenny Rhythm & Roots Festival we gathered at our hotel on Saturday morning, Pete Holidai, Johnny Bonnie, Tony St Ledger, Bren Lynott and myself. We decided to go and check out our first venue which was the Left Bank.
 Steve Rapid-Kilkenny Roots Festival

When we play such a festival there are certain things you have to take for granted. You’re not sure of who your audience might be. We’re largely left to your own devices as regards the sound. We don’t really soundcheck as such, we simply makes sure that everything is working and at the allotted time your audience gathers in front of you with that “go ahead, impress me” look. We spot a couple of friendly faces in the audience but we focus on our performance and on giving it your best.

Trouble Pilgrims at The Kilkenny Roots Festival

Three full shows in two days is pretty tough going, but once we start playing and begin to see a positive reaction it give us the energy to deliver a blistering set. Something that was very true of the Pilgrim’s 10.30 slot in Ryan’s. You’re no more that a couple of feet away from your audience, so they can see the whites of our eyes and we theirs. Very quickly we know if we’re are getting through. We did and we had a great time playing a two hour set, including encores, before what was a very lively, interactive and appreciate crowd. Thank you folks, your why we do it. It was the weekend’s highlight.

Psychotic Reaction.Trouble Pilgrims-Photo David Bell

Pete Holidai-Trouble Pilgrims-Photo David Bell

After having retired to the hotel bar to unwind for some much needed r ‘n r. We awoke to a somewhat brighter day (it had rained heavily all day Saturday) and with a full Irish breakfast to gird our loins for the day ahead. We went to visit Willie Meghan in Rollercoaster Records, a central focus of the festival that was stocked with CDs of the visiting acts as well as hosting some in-store performances. We returned to the hotel to change and prepare for the final gig in Langtons. We arrived to find the Sunday clientele was mainly a room full of families out for Sunday lunch. Maybe not the most immediately promising prospect for a hi-energy rock band.

Trouble Pilgrims Brendan Lynott

But we needn’t have worried as, once we started to play, a sizable number of people stood to watch the band deliver another set that, by all accounts from the reaction and responses, hit the spot for many. Including a couple who had come back to see us after having got up at a previous gig and attempted to jive to Psychotic Reaction. They picked a more functional song on this occasion. We got a lively call for an encore and duly delivered a full on Bliztin’ At The Ritz.

 Johnny Bonnie-Trouble Pilgrims

Johnny Bonnie on main street Kilkenny

We came to Kilkenny and we won over three audiences who largely had no idea of who we or our songs were. So thank you Kilkenny, thank you to the Rhythm & Roots organizers and to the PA people but especially to  those of you who came out and listened, danced, cheered and rocked with us.
Trouble Pilgrims_Bren Lynott-Pete Holidai-Johnny Bonnie-Tony St Ledger-Steve Rapid-Ryans Bar Kilkenny

Trouble Pilgrims live at Ryan’s Kilkenny.Photo Barry Hartigan

We hope to be back soon, as we had a great time. So if you’re lookin’ for trouble …

Steve Rapid
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