Belfast Telegraph

Dubliners upstaged by Lords Prayer

Legendary hellraisers The Dubliners have fallen unusually silent when they were upstaged by the Lord's Prayer.

The veteran folk band, renowned worldwide for their raucous sound, are playing two 50th anniversary homecoming concerts in Dublin's Christ Church Cathedral as part of the capital's annual TradFest.

However the four surviving members were forced to hush during the launch when a lay minister insisted on upholding the church's own traditions of saying noon prayers from the pulpit.

Refusing to make a holy show of themselves, Barney McKenna, John Sheahan, Eamonn Campbell and Patsy Watchorn downed instruments and quietly filed into a pew together to bow their heads during the daily thanksgiving.

Afterwards, Bernard Woods, lay minister for the Diocese of Dublin and Glendalough, joined the band members as he invited attendant public relations managers, concert organisers and journalists to shake hands as a sign of peace.

Bemused fiddler Sheahan welcomed the divine intervention during the rollicking group's first launch in a church.

"Interrupted wouldn't be the right word," he said. "Enhanced would be the word. By noon prayers, from the Dean himself, in the pulpit."

Despite the nod from above, the band best known for songs including Seven Drunken Nights, Monto (about Dublin's now defunct red light district) and Whiskey in the Jar, could not say if their set list will include their version of Hand Me Down My Bible.

"You never know," said banjo player McKenna.

"Anything could happen at a Dubliners gig. Most of it has been organised but with The Dubliners you just don't know what could happen."

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