In the heart of Dublin stands an almighty giant – Whelan’s.
I’ve been playing gigs in Whelan’s for close to ten years and going there as a punter even longer. The atmosphere of Whelan’s puts it ahead of a lot of venues in my opinion. The staff are friendly and always happy to help bands/punters with anything.
There’s always a great mix of bands & artists and because of the two venues/rooms in the one building you can have local, independent bands and bigger touring acts.
On the other hand, it can be a great place to go for a quiet drink during the evening before gigs.
I know from the bands I’ve played in, Whelan’s is like a second home at times. It can feel like a homecoming gig after the end of a long tour, even if it’s just a one off show.
The other great quality of Whelan’s is its audience. Without ever coming across as an exclusive venue, Whelan’s manages to attract very like-minded people, who seem to have a genuine love of music.
Last but not least, Whelan’s filled a gap in the Dublin festival circuit with their “Ones To Watch” festival taking place in the first few weeks of January, showcasing the bands to look out for over the next year. It’s only been running a few years but so far it has been an incredible weekend of new music and always attracts a big crowd.
If you’re ever in the area a spontaneous trip would be a fantastic use of your time.