herald

Tuesday 17 October 2017

Croker and Dublin City Council the talk of Nashville locals

The residents of Clonliffe Road and Ballybough Road and Dublin City Manager Owen Keegan are the talk of downtown Nashville.

"I don't think the Irish system understands how passionate Garth is about his fans," said Marvin Baker, chairman of radio station Cafe Nashville.

As Mr Baker - a well-known music industry mogul at Music Row strip - sees it, Garth will stick to his guns and go against all the pillars of the industry to meet his fans' wishes.

"Garth is a champion of the fans, always selling tickets at a lower price and same price no matter where you are in the stadium.

"So, right now, I understand his position clearly. He'll stick to that," Mr Baker said.

"He once stayed up for 23 hours straight and shook everyone's hand - he really cares about his fans."

I walk past BMI, Warner Bros and many other music headquarters and anyone you meet knows all about Dublin and the city council's recent decision.

Sitting in Edge Hill Cafe where all the music buffs hang out you overhear people talking about the fiasco. Brooks is big news here and his comeback after 14 years is even bigger news.

confused

I interrupt a table where two young men are sitting talking about our national stadium asking them what exactly have they heard.

"I believe the shows were cancelled and generally people are confused. I don't know why they're cancelled but that just wouldn't happen here," said Corey Rice (26).

His lunch date is also a little confused.

"They were around the overflow days, weren't they?" he asks. "Everyone knows about it here. It's the talk of Music Row. He chose Dublin as his comeback location and now he's not wanted. We just do not get it," said John Paul (24).

Mr Baker, who is somewhat of a legend on Music Row, simply calls it "foreign," explaining that the selling of tickets before a licence is granted simply would not happen in the US.

Irishman abroad Brendan McCarthy (33), who is a marketing executive with KEMC Records on Music Row, tells me that people are simply "astonished" by what is going on Ireland.

"They're more astonished and they don't understand why Ireland can't get this together and how it's come to this.

"Ireland is better than causing this mess. Garth still wants it, the fans still want it, the objectors have backed down so let's make it happen is what I say," the music executive says.

With the ship en route to Ireland and with Garth Brooks' own hotel booking still in place it is still all up in the air.

Will they go ahead, will they not go ahead?

Whatever happens, in Music City all the talk is about Clonliffe, Ballybough and the residents' petitions.

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