The Ballincollig Winter Music Festival returns for its eleventh year with a line-up featuring the best of Irish musical talent. Along with free music sessions, workshops and community events the Ballincollig Winter Music Festival is delighted to welcome some of Ireland’s favourite bands coming from a wide range of musical backgrounds. The Ballincollig Winter Music Festival runs from January 23 to 26.

On Thursday, January 23, The White Horse Guitar Club take to the stage with very special guests The Murphy Beds, a US based twosome. The The White Horse Guitar Club are an 11 piece band born in the music venue Upstairs at The White Horse who’ve become something of a phenomenon in the last number of years, selling out Opera House shows and touring Europe to much acclaim. They interpret the songbook of roots, alt country and folk to present an uplifting, joyful show and are sure to set the bar high in this sold out show as first band out of the traps for this year’s Festival. 

On Friday, January 24, for the first time ever The Blizzards take to the famous stage. A four-piece power punk pop outfit, their charisma and untempered energy charm all who witness their magnetic and commanding performances. Propelled by melodic and dynamic hooks, at the core of their sound is guitar-driven songwriting that houses a heart of pop, and a soul of distinctive lyrical storytelling. Their award-winning debut album A Public Display of Affection was produced by LA based Michael Beinhorn (Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Soundgarden) and remained in the Top 20 for 18 weeks, followed by a critically acclaimed second album, Domino Effect. The band have achieved exceptional success to date opening for the likes of Oasis, The 1975 and AC/DC to name just a few.  Tickets are €25 and doors open 8:30pm.

On Saturday 25, The Frank and Walters return to the White Horse for a hometown show as an acoustic duo with special guest Paddy Dennehy. For nearly 30 years, Paul Linehan has penned and performed hundreds of songs with The Frank and Walters which have captured the hearts and minds of generations. In this special presentation, the band play all your favourites and some long lost classics in all their acoustic glory. Paul also shares some of the stories behind the songs and anecdotes from the hippy diddly crazy world of life in one of Ireland’s most enduring bands, including stories of when Radiohead and Suede supported the Franks on early tours. Expect to hear hits such as ‘After All’ and ‘Fashion crisis hits New York’ coupled with timeless classics like ‘How can I exist’ and ‘Landslide’. The lyrical and musical genius of Linehan’s song writing is laid bare in this intimate format and the true magic of the songs, coupled with Paul’s engaging personality shines through. Jim X Comet will bring the evening to a crescendo after the show with a DJ set featuring some Cork gems in the Festival club.

On Sunday, January 26, Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh’s Altan make a welcome return to Ballincollig eleven years after the band appeared in the inaugural festival. Altan will be joined by special guests from Breton flautist Jean-Michel Veillon and guitarist Yvon Riou. With their exquisitely produced award-winning recordings, ranging dynamically from the most sensitive and touching old Irish songs all the way to hard hitting reels and jigs, and with their heartwarming, dynamic live performances, Altan have moved audiences from Donegal to Tokyo to Seattle. Throughout, there has been the unwavering commitment of the band to bringing the beauty of traditional music, particularly that of the Donegal fiddlers and singers, to contemporary audiences in a way that brings out all its qualities and destroys none. In fact, Altan have always believed that Irish traditional music is a modern music in every sense and its growing influence and popularity have proved them right. Tickets from €22.50 and door open at 8pm.

As is customary, the Ballincollig Winter Music Festival will host a plethora of free sessions, workshops & community events. A full program is available from