'These are real people, brothers sisters, fathers daughters, sons with their own story' - Isaac Butler on why he played Rock Against Homelessness
Dublin singer/songwriter Isaac Butler reveals why he lent his voice to the event in aid of COPE and Focus Ireland in Galway on Saturday night
“Have yis no homes to go to..” The closing time phrase heard for generations in pubs across this country is a sad irony not lost on me as myself and the band took to the stage last night at Monroe’s Tavern in Galway for the Rock Against Homelessness gig in aid of Focus Ireland and COPE.
On Saturday afternoon the lads and I packed up the van and headed for Galway, all of us excited not only to be on the same bill with great Irish acts such as Brave Giant and State Lights but also grateful for the opportunity to be playing a small part in helping raise much needed funds for Focus Ireland and Cope Galway.
There was a strong presence from both charities in Monroe's from early on doing what they do, pulling up their sleeves taking action and getting stuck in setting up the venue for the night ahead.
After we unloaded the gear and did our sound check we headed out to go grab a bite. It was a freezing night in Galway city, the ice cold chill a harsh reminder of the cause we were there to support. Raising awareness for the 10,000 plus homeless people across Ireland is even more important now as the temperatures drop.
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Myself and the band kicked off proceedings at 9:30pm followed by the State Lights boys at 10:15pm and the closing act, Brave Giant at 11:15pm.
The atmosphere in Monroes was incredible. It was the perfect mix of acts and you could feel the energy from the crowd. Everyone in the room had a great night. Myself and the lads kicked off the show, warmed up the crowd for State Lights up next. By the time they got to their second song the room was packed full. The band's frontman Shane O’Brien really knows how to put on a show and get the punters going and last night was no different. As their set finished they left the stage and the crowd on a high and ready for Brave Giant who played an incredible set and rocked the night through to the end.
Events like last nights Rock Against Homelessness in Galway and the upcoming one in Dublin's Olympia Theatre in 2020 are so important for making people aware of how huge the homelessness crisis is in our country. These are real people, brothers sisters, fathers daughters, sons with their own story. It's a real issue and it’s happening now. We can choose to take action, help and be instrumental in making a difference.
I'd like to say a huge 'thank you' to the event organisers and the crew at The Sunday Independent for the opportunity to be involved. I headed for home last night grateful to have a bed to go home to and mindful of the many people who do not and would be sleeping rough on the streets.