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Late Late welcomes stars for annual charity busk

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Bono and Glen Hansard perform a piece on the special Late Late Show busk for Simon last night. They kept a 10-year tradition going despite the Covid pandemic

Bono and Glen Hansard perform a piece on the special Late Late Show busk for Simon last night. They kept a 10-year tradition going despite the Covid pandemic

Andres Poveda

Bono and Glen Hansard perform a piece on the special Late Late Show busk for Simon last night. They kept a 10-year tradition going despite the Covid pandemic

Some of Ireland's most iconic musicians, including Bono, The Edge, Glen Hansard and other household names, brought their traditional Christmas Eve busk to The Late Late Show last night.

The twinkling Christmas lights and hordes of last-minute Christmas shoppers and carol singers on Dublin's Grafton Street were replaced by a dazzling array of festive light projections and shimmering Christmas trees, as the stars took to the stage at the RTÉ studio for a special Late Late Show Busk to raise vital funds for the Simon Community charity.

Recalling how the annual busking session got started, Glen Hansard said: "Ten years, it's hard to believe.

"It started off so simply, and the fact that every year people come back and we do it, it's a really good thing."

He was walking down Grafton Street the day before Christmas Eve 10 years ago "and the Simon Christmas carollers were out.

"They were shaking the buckets and they said 'ah, how are ya, Glen? Give us a song'."

He went into the city the next day thinking they might still be on the street.

"I took out my guitar and started playing. Mundy was passing by… he joined in. Damien Dempsey and Imelda were walking by and they did Fairytale of New York, so we kind of had this thing happen spontaneously.

"Around December 20, I'll send out a text to anybody in my phone book - word goes out to people, it's like 'everybody come and we'll figure it out'," he said.


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