Hothouse Flowers in Gyles Quay
On Saturday night I headed for Ferguson's Bar in Gyles Quay where top international band The Hothouse Flowers were in action and were being supported by local man Stewart Agnew.
The place was packed by the time I got there with life long flowers fans and Stewart was knocking them dead with some self penned classics and the odd well timed covers.
I wasn't too long in the door when I met up with Marty McDonnell, hr daughter Orla and Teddy McGuigan all from Belfast who couldn't wait to see Liam and the lads I action.
Next I caught up with Sandra Marmion from Muirhevnamor and Tommy 'Doc' Brennan from Louth Village who told me they are big time flowers and were sure it was going to be an epic night.
I then caught up with some of the fantastic staff from Carlingford Nursing Home who were having their staff night out and they included main man Gavin Doyle and Zaneta Denesova both from Gyles Quay, Karla Bailey from Carlingford, Amy Martin, Ashley and Thomas Williams all from Cooley who were up for a night of it and were having a laugh with brothers Brendan, Thomas and Emmett Williams from Belfast who told me they were just tagging along with the staff do!
Seated close by were Eddie and Anne Carroll from Newry who were with brother-in-law Ken O'Hagan from Ravensdale and the lady who just wanted to be known as Siobhan from Drogheda who told me she was in love with Liam Ó Maonlaí the singer.
After this I headed over for a chat with Miriam and Patrick Carlyle from Dublin who told me they had been fans of the flowers back in the day, I expected they'd be renewing their fan worship on the night.
I then managed a swift word with Mel Rogers from Byrne and Maguires and Ian McDonald from Home Bakery who couldn't wait to see the band and Mel said he remembered being down in the RDS to see them in action too.
Making my way through the crowds I then caught up with Eamonn and Anne White from Dromiskin who were also fans back in the day and certainly weren't going to pass up the chance of seeing them so close to their mobile home.
After this I managed a few words with Niki and Mark Heatley, Elaine and Simon Cawthorne all from Carlingford who were looking forward to what they hoped was going to be a fantastic night.
Seated close by were Gillian and Joe Crawley from Redbarns Road Joan Fox and John Murphy from Gyles Quay who said they were fans and were really looking forward to seeing them.
I then had the pleasure of meeting my old friend Damian O'Connell from Lordship who was there with his delightful wife Lorraine who were enjoying the company of Seamus and Olivia Buckley also from Lordship and even if they didn't know it, it was Damian who introduced America to the Hothouse Flowers, but that's another story…
Not too far away I then got talking to Philip and Helen Savage from Riverstown who were with James and Jenny Muldoon from Jonesboro who were settled in and were ready for a great night of music and drinks.
Meanwhile up near the stage I then got talking to Marie and Aidan Gallagher from Cooley who were enjoying the company of John Murphy from Gyles Quay who told me he has been a big fan of the band for years but never got to see them live and certainly wasn't going to miss them when they were playing on his doorstep!
Next I met up with Aisling and Colm Duffy from Ravensdale who were up for making it a real night to remember and couldn't wait to see the flowers.
Standing close by was Lorcan Hughes from Lordship whom when I asked him if he was looking forward to seeing them replied 'big time'.
Making my way over to another table I met up with Noeleen Costello and Denise McGrath both from Dublin who are big Hothouse Flowers and were there with Denise' parents Rose and Tony McGrath from Gyles Quay and Noeleen's daughter Michelle who were definitely up for making it a real night to remember.
Seated at an adjacent table were Marie and Niall Dunlevy from Omeath, Ruaidhri McCabe and Kelly Martin both from Gyles Quay, Ian Martin from Kilcurry with his parents John and Olive Martin from Kilcurry and John's sister Ann Sellick from Fatima who were all big fans back in the day.
Just arrived in were Grace Carr, Caroline and Nicola McEvoy all from Newry and Caroline told me she is the band's number one fan and has seen them the previous week in Ballymena.
Yes, I'd written about them on more than one occasion before, but that was but a few years ago, well they were back on the scene in Fergusons on Saturday night, yes it was Catherine and Brian McDonnell from Ravensdale who were with Margaret and Gavin McDonnell who were over from Navan specially for the gig, although Gavin was having a wardrobe malfunction, the flashing lights on his Christmas jumper had given up the ghost and I don't think he was going to get any replacement batteries behind the bar!
Finally, before I departed I met up with Jenny Forbes and Dave Lewis from Belfast who told me they were the only touring caravan in Gyles Quay that weekend and come down specially to see the Hothouse Flowers in action.