Barry “Jazz” Finnegan is an award winning artist from Dublin who works primarily in the medium of charcoal. His constructions are typically based on figures from the worlds of movies, poetry, and music, and it is clear from seeing his work that Finnegan has an uncanny ability to effectively capture the character of every subject that he works on.
But Finnegan is not simply content to exist in the realm of visual art, he is also the curator of open mic live music night that takes part in Bruxelles Bar on Harry St, Dublin, every Wednesday night, The Zodiac Sessions. Every Wednesday, downstairs in this fine establishment a selection of some of the most talented singer-songwriters in Dublin come together to perform a mix of originals and covers for a few hours in a relaxed and respectful environment. Irish music is in a very healthy place at the moment in terms of talent and no where is this more in evidence than at The Zodiac Sessions. With The Zodiac Sessions, Finnegan is providing a supportive environment for budding musicians in Dublin, and indeed from further afield, to hone their performance skills and network with similar minded people in an attempt to forward their career. While the standard every night is always incredibly high there is no requirement for you to be an established artist to perform, all you need is a passion for music and you will be welcomed with open arms into the Zodiac family.
This writer has had the pleasure to attend The Zodiac Sessions a few times now, and has been blown away every time by the standard of music on show. Every night begins at 9pm and goes on until late, very late on occasion depending on who happens to turn up, and admission is free.
Every song and every set is respected and greeted with encouragement by the audience and the other performers.
Many of the acts that have performed on the stage of Bruxelles have since gone on to carve out a successful career. Acts such as Dermot Kennedy, Gavin James, Danny O’Reilly, among others have spent time honing their craft in intimate acoustic rooms such as this before eventually going on to become some of the biggest names in Irish music.
Still not convinced that a trip to Bruxelles of a Wednesday night might be worth your while? Well, let Gavin James convince you otherwise, he knows a bit about music.