2009 Harvest Blues Trail


The Blues Trail

Pub Venues in Monaghan town

Smokin’ Hogs – East Anglia

Smokin’ Hogs
Smokin’ Hogs have been on the UK music scene since 2004. They are a four-piece band consisting of; Mark “The Reverend” Kennedy lead guitar, Steve “Cosmic” Soer bass guitar and vocals, Paul “Dr Vanity” SuttonFrontman and Harp and Keef “Slowbone” Shepherd drums. The music of the Hogs would best be described as rockin’ Rhythm and Blues and their sound has been compared to Peter Green meets ZZ Top! They are an exciting and authentic live act and like to generate energy on stage with an electric and visual stage show with a nod to the British Blues boom of the 1960’s. In 2008 the Hogs played with the likes of Gregg Wright from the USA on his European Tour and also Dr Feelgood. They have played at various blues clubs and festivals and have plenty more of the same lined up during 2009 including the Linton Blues Festival with Dr Feelgood & Nine Below Zero. The Hogs have already released one CD entitled “Leavin‘ Here” and are set to record another in the Autumn of 2009.


This band has grown out of their American influences which show clearly here. These guys could play their set on any American stage, and the fans would walk up to them expecting American accents, so tied within across the pond sounds are they. When it comes to the blues, This Band have all the bases covered, whether it’s a 1950’s Chess classic, a chunk of New Orleans funk, rocking Texas shuffles, jazz influenced west coast swing or one of their many originals, they play it all with style, authority, and taste. From Lightning Hopkins to the Meters and beyond, they mix up a red hot gumbo of groove with tunes from the likes of Muddy Waters, Little Walter, Junior Wells, Freddie King and many many more.

Big Mamma’s Door – London

Big Mamma’s Door


London-based Big Mamma’s Door play their brand of Sexy 50’s RnB with a whole lot of professionalism and love for the blues…the music is a just top notch.
They are an excellent band…her smoky/laid-back voice does the risqué blues-with-soul stuff with a vengeance. This is good old 50’s proper Rhythm & Blues, not the soul-less heartless pop of the 00’s ; real blues with real rhythm.
This is an engaging and highly energetic band…the audience was wowed by the sheer personality of Fiona as a performer, the artistry of Mal on guitar and the musical excellence of the rest of the band.”
“Fiona McElroy Whipped the crazy crowd into a clamour and is enjoyable more Etta James than Janis Joplin in her approach. Her gutsy vocals were matched by playful Irish banter between numbers. The crowd had no choice but to enjoy things enormously…
‘Open For Business’ by Big Mamma’s Door is a slick and sensitively handled bunch of great songs – like an old friend come to stay and going over old stories but putting a new slant on them

Ben Reel Band – Monaghan

Ben Reel Band


Recently the Band has just finished a successful tour in Holland, receiving rave reviews . This was the 5th European tour in 3 years in which they have a growing fan base. The band Ben Reel : Vocals ,Guitar, harmonica, Michael Black on drums, Ronnie O’Flynn on bass, Micky McCarney on lead guitar.
The Band will be releasing their 5th album ‘Time to get Reel’ in sept 09. It promises to be the best yet. This band just goes from strength to strength building up a loyal following throughout Ireland and Europe . This year the band have had numerous TV appearances and radio airtime, the word is spreading, this simmering underground movement is about to explode. A must see live experience. A mix of everything that is great in music, a uniquely soulful, spiritual, groovy sound, described as the middle ground between Rock&Jazz. The have developed a kinda chilled out rootsy Americana west coast feel. “From the brilliance of the playing and arranging to the magnificence of Reel’s voice “.

King King – featuring Alan Nimmo, Scotland

King King
This band certainly knows how to make an entrance. Fronted by charismatic bluesman Alan Nimmo, their exhilarating debut at last year’s Festival. Since surging into life less than twelve months ago they have barely stopped for breath, and their electrifying sound and scorching live shows have generated more of a thunderous roar than a buzz.
With outstanding reviews and a diary fit to burst, you’d be forgiven for thinking that King had enough to keep them occupied for a moment or two. You’d be wrong. Apparently imbued with sufficient energy to power a small town, the band has also found time to get into the studio, the result being their debut EP ‘Broken Heal’. Produced alongside the team behind the Arctic Monkeys, Kaiser Chiefs and the Editors (to name but a few), the EP instantly received a gleaming review from Blues Matters Magazine, including remarks on it’s “emotive lyrics”, “heartwrenching guitar solos” and “stirring guitar work”.

The Blues Jam – Monaghan

The Blues Jam
Takes place on the “Last Thursday” of “Every Month” in Seamie Mc Kenna’s Bar, Dublin St. Monaghan, and is available to everyone who likes to sing, play or just enjoy the blues. A band, comprising local musicians is always on hand to open the proceedings, & the Jams to date have witnessed everything from first-rate acoustic blues, to young guys cranking it up with classics by Rory Gallagher & Jimmi Hendrix. It’s been running now since 2003. There will be a “House Band” to start things off; you never know who is going to be there. It could be you!! Des will be your host and MC




This is West Coast swing at its best over the years these guys have played all the major festivals and opened shows for the biggest names in the Blues world the likes of Albert King, Albert Collins and many many more. These guys were a big hit last two festivals if you saw them you know what to expect and no doubt you will be back for more.
These Guys are slick, tight, look great and are as tight as a nut.ENTERTAINMENT GUARANTEED, “Catch these guys if west Coast swing blues lights your candle.

Rab McCullough band – Belfast

Rab McCullough band


has rocked the Blues scene from the 60,S sharing the stage with Jimi Hendrix The small Faces Rory Gallagher and the Yardbirds but to name a few. Rab took part in the International blues challenge at the w.c. Handy awards in Memphis in 2000 coming third, the first band ever to be placed outside the united states . Taking home with pride his award to His home town of Belfast. His album (Belfast Breakdown) was no 1 in the album charts in France in 2005.The blues is known as a soundtrack to the struggle to overcome, but it is a magic potion of hope. Rabs fiery playing and soulful vocals have convinced many a fan that he honed his chops on Chicago,s southside or in some Texas roadhouse, but it was on the streets of Belfast that Rab cut his teeth. Playing in most of the Big Blues Festivals in England, Norway and the States their sharing the stage with Lonnie Brooks, Arthur Mississippi Williams and Many more. This year in July he shares the stage in Maryport with Paul Jones blues band and John Mayall. Fans and everyone who hears Rab will have his name on the tongues when witnessing his blistering performance

The Juke Joints – Holland

The Juke Joints




They’re Holland’s best-known blues rockers The Juke Joints, have performed their music throughout the whole of Europe for the last 25 years !
They have released a new ‘Live’ DVD last year with very special guests: 16-year-old guitarist Ryan Perry (Homemade Jamz Blues Band) , T Model Ford, Lord Bernardo and Sherman Robertson.
They album is a brimful of blues styles, incorporating Chicago blues, rock ‘n’ roll and rockabilly, all linked by the band’s unmatched energy, which is driven to unprecedented heights.
To say that the band has been touring extensively is an understatement: with frequent visits to England, they are constantly gracing stages in Holland, France, Germany, Belgium, Latvia, Switzerland, Scandinavia.
They were the first European band to play the prestigious Delta Blues Festival in Greenville,Mississippiwith B.B. King, Dr John and Little Feat and they played B.B. King’s club in Memphis !
They have shared stages with the best that blues has to offer: Kim Wilson, Buddy Guy, Johnny Copeland, Little Charlie & the Nightcats, The Paladins, Rod Piazza & the Might Flyers, The Nighthawks, Bernard Allison, Van Morrison, Bonnie Raitt,

The Roy Fulton Band – Northern Ireland

The Roy Fulton Band
Making their debut at this year’s event is the powerhouse blues trio, the Roy Fulton Band. Roy Fulton accompanied by Davy Neill on bass andLawrence McKeown on drums play a selection of blues-rock standards (Hendrix, Cream etc) and are renowned for their ‘jam-band’ attitude and playing style. This is a wonderful opportunity to witness one of Ireland’s finest guitar players in action with his band. volume swells, soaring bends, melodic mojo, on-the-tip-of-destruction note flurries… …played with fire and respectGUITAR PLAYER (USA MAGAZINE)


This band describe their music as 1970s California blues. But, really, their remit travels far and wide, from Texas to New Orleans, from Chicago to the Mississippi Delta, and tips the hat to a whole slew of blues styles and heroes along the way. Blues bands come and go, and it takes something exceptional to make them stand out: Hollywood Slim is an impressive vocalist with a lively harp sound, the rhythm section of Papa Hynes and Reverend Priestly fits like a glove, and the guitar playing of Graham “Junior” Hynes is a constant surprise, never taking the obvious solo. However, along with the silken piano skills of guest Gavin Povey, Hynes adds a real sheen to the proceedings. Since their formation in 2004, Hollywood Slim & The Fat Cats have played at every major festival in Ireland, from the Kilkenny Rhythm & Roots to the Cork Jazz, winning new fans with every show and rapidly increasing their fast assembled following, both domestically and internationally.

B & The Honeyboys – Wexford

B & The Honeyboys

They are a bluesy, funky, R&B outfit formed in early 2006 by Kieran McEvoy and Aileen Mythen . Sharing a love of Blues and all things related, the two, both involved in other projects and activities originally formed the band as an outlet for playing Blues standards in bars and clubs. Since then B & The Honeyboys have become a more serious concern recording an album of original songs, written by B and K.J., which has garnered glowing reviews and widespread critical acclaim.
McEvoy has a kick-ass, full-on electric guitar style for which the word gritty might have been specially coined. Mythen is a real discovery, her bluesy voice filling your head with pure soul as she gets under the skin of the songs and sings them from the inside out.


No festival can be complete without the support from the publican’s venues in town who are the partners in bringing this festival together.

Access to any of these venues is free of charge and performance times may vary from venue to venue. Nearly 40 gigs will be played at these venues by the time we head to work on Monday

List of Monaghan Pubs participating:
The Shamrock Bar, The Town Hall suite at the Westenra Hotel, The Squealing Pig Bar & Restaurant, The Anchor Bar, An Poc Fada bar & beer garden, The Brewery Bar, Terry’s Bar & Lounge, Master Deery’s Bar & Restaurant