Albert Music Hall Celebrating ‘Irish Night’ on March 23

Mar 13, 2019
Courtesy of: Albert Music Hall Ballyhaunis Band

So, how are you going to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? Let’s face it, St. Patrick’s Day celebrations can be hokey. Put on a green hat, eat some corned beef, drink some green beer, and listen to “Danny Boy” on the jukebox and you’re Irish for a day. Hah, corned beef isn’t even a traditional meal in the Emerald Isle, and the lyrics to “Danny Boy” were written by an Englishman.

A more authentic way to celebrate the Irish contribution to the U.S. would be to visit Waretown’s Albert Music Hall, located at 131 Wells Mills Rd. (Route 532), on Saturday, March 23, to take in its “Irish Night” concert.

The Albert Music Hall, in one physical incarnation or another, has been known for its mixture of bluegrass, country and old-timey music for over five decades. Its current complex, which opened in 1997, features a 6,000-square-foot, 350-seat concert hall and a 600-square-foot “Pickin’ Shed,” where musicians jam and applaud each other’s chops and where kids of all ages can learn the basics of playing guitars, banjos, fiddles, mandolins and upright basses.

Its name may bring to mind London’s famous Royal Albert Hall, dedicated in 1867 by Queen Victoria in memory of her late husband Prince Albert, but is actually named after brothers Joe and George Albert, who inoculated Southern Ocean County with a love of bluegrass and country music in a secluded deer cabin in Waretown in the 1950s. Musically, though, the Albert Music Hall is more reminiscent of Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium, home of the Grand Ole Opry from 1943 to 1974.

But when the Albert Music Hall brings in Irish bands it is remaining true to its roots. Country music, and especially bluegrass, sprang from the music of Scots-Irish immigrants who had settled in Appalachia. So “Irish Night” at the Albert is practically a homecoming celebration.

The Irish Night lineup will feature the Devrin Academy Step Dancers, Ballyhaunis, Church Street Revival, River Drivers and Hard Road Travelers.

“This is one of our most popular shows,” said Danelle Rozinski, publicity manager. “People will hear Irish, bluegrass and country.”

The show is scheduled to run from 7:30 to 11 p.m., with doors opening at 6. Admission, as it is for the Albert Music Hall’s weekly Saturday evening shows, is $5 for adults and $1 for children younger than 12.

One thing to keep in mind – if you want to enjoy some Guinness or Jameson while listening to the hall’s Irish Music, you’ll have to visit a pub on your way to the show. Albert Hall is an alcohol- and tobacco-free venue.  —R.M. and E.E.

 

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