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Glen Hansard & Mark Geary Live at the Cobalt Café, Dublin
The stuff of pure imagination!
Celina Murphy, 01 Feb 2010
I’m not in the habit of purchasing guidebooks to my own city but from what I gather, visitors to Dublin are fed an awful lot of overly sentimental humbug about magic moments in city centre pubs.
Then again, there’s every chance a wayward traveler has found himself where I am tonight; suddenly involved in an elaborate four-part harmony with Glen Hansard and the equally sauced audience members to my immediate left, who also happen to my new bessie mates in the whole world.
An hour earlier, pink-cheeked and breathless, Mark Geary and Hansard puffed their way to front of the modest Cobalt Club off Parnell Square, which tonight looks like your poshest mate’s front room; all red curtains and wine glasses, high ceilings and smiling faces.
The sprightly foursome (Mark, Glen and guitars) have just come from the North side of the city and a man called Fabio’s gaff (whether it was a chipper or not, nobody could tell) where €6,500 had won the illusive Fabio a two-hour performance by Glen and Geary, with proceeds going to the Haiti Earthquake appeal. “They even had the beds made up for us,” Geary beams, before launching into the fluttery and sweet ‘Adam And Eve’, “They were brilliant!”
Hansard’s set is expectedly sporadic with Willy Wonka’s ‘Pure Imagination’, Marvin Gaye’s ‘Sexual Healing’ and Thin Lizzy’s ‘Dancing In The Moonlight’ all getting a brief look-in (the latter follows a ‘Low Rising’ lyric Glen explains he wanted desperately to sound like a Phil Lynott original-‘I want you to meet me somewhere tonight in this old tourist town’). Hours roll by and soon enough Candi Staton’s ‘Young Hearts Run Free’ is fitting right in with the likes of Frames’ signature tune ‘Revelate’ and Mic Christopher’s gloriously redemptive ‘Heyday’.
Crowd participation is not requested tonight; it’s demanded, with audience members even contributing their own poems and songs. Whether our motley crew is a group of friends, musicians or quantity surveyors, for these few hours at least, we’re all equal participants in the Glen Hansard and Mark Geary Revue – a real treat for anyone who’s ever wanted in on the Oscar winner’s seemingly romantic and boundlessly creative world.