Tom Jones among the stars coming to Cork’s Live at the Marquee in 2020


Tom Jones, Dido, Diana Ross and Sinead O’Connor are among acts performing this summer at Live at the Marquee 2020.

The stage version of Mrs Brown’s Boys is also coming to the venue, with three shows booked for June 12 and 13.

Other acts announced yesterday include Cat Stevens, Christy Moore, Crowded House, The National and Nathan Carter.

Mrs Brown’s Boys will be the only other act appearing over two days.

It is the first time award-winning comedian Brendan O’Carroll has taken his hit D’Live Show to Cork.

Of the Mrs Brown’s Boys creator, promoter Peter Aiken said: “I wouldn’t have been a big fan of his years ago, but I can see why people like it.

“He went over to the UK and he took out all those other comedians by the roots and ended up with a number one show.”

Tom Jones’ trip to Cork will be his third and when he arrives for his June 2 gig, the voice behind hits such as It’s Not Unusual, She’s a Lady and Kiss will be just five days shy of his 80th birthday.

In announcing the show, Mr Aiken said he was “proud to announce one of the most enduring personalities in the music entertainment business” has confirmed a return to Ireland to play Belfast on 31 May and Live At The Marquee in Cork.

Tom Jones at the Marquee in 2014
Tom Jones at the Marquee in 2014

Mr Aiken later told how his father Jim drove Tom Jones into a ditch the first time the Welsh crooner came to this country.

The late and legendary rock promoter, who brought the Rolling Stones to Slane Castle in 1982, had just bought what is believed to be a Ford Zephyr.

The car, one of Ford’s so-called Z-Cars, had what was at the time an impressive top speed of 155 km/h and could go from 0-80km/h in 9.1 seconds.

“He has been coming here since 1967,” Mr Aiken said of Tom Jones’ arrival in Ireland. “My father drove him the first time he came here.

The Green Green Grass of Home was a number one and he had bought a new car and the old fella was showing him how fast it could go, when he crashed it.

“Tom Jones never forgot that.”

Whether or not either man was injured isn’t known, but it led to a friendship between Jones and the Aiken family that obviously endures to this day.

More than 1.1m tickets have been sold for Live at the Marquee concerts since the music festival first came to Cork 14 years ago.

The former 11.3-acre Ford depot site was on the market for €8.5m after Nama put it up for sale.

The site had been previously earmarked for a hotel and office complex when it was owned by Howard Holdings — which bought it for €35m.

It was sold to Glenveagh Properties for €15m in 2018. Up to 1,000 homes are expected to be built on the land to tie in with the expansion of the city into brownfield dockland sites.

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