Bandon artist had ‘Wilde’ time at LA ceremony

April 14th, 2022 8:30 PM

By Kieran O'Mahony

Bandon DJ and producer Bantum performed at the Oscar Wilde Awards in LA along with Loah and Cork band True Tides.

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AN electronic producer and artist from Bandon who performed at the prestigious Oscar Wilde Awards held in LA recently said it was one of those ‘once in a lifetime’ trips that he will never forget.

Ruairí Lynch, who performs as Bantum, was invited to perform along with singer Loah (Sallay Matu Garnett) at the annual Hollywood event, which is organised by the US-Ireland Alliance.

The awards, now in its 16th year, celebrate creatives in entertainment who are Irish and this year’s honourees included Oscar-winner Kenneth Branagh actor Jamie Dornan and director Adam McKay.

Bantum, whose track ‘Gully’ named after a place in Bandon features on a recent Bord Gáis TV ad, said they got the official invite from awards organiser Trina Virgo six months ago after their music was recommended to her.

‘I didn’t realise how popular and respected this event is on the pre-Oscars circuit. It was held in the Ebell Theatre, a classic Hollywood theatre,’ said Bantum.

‘The gig went very well and without a hitch and we took to the stage after the speeches and we had Brian Dillion from Talos and Meltybrains playing keyboards for us. We played five songs and Cork band True Tides were also on the bill. The whole day was pretty full on and we finished the night in a bar in Hollywood afterwards.’

He said it was an amazing night and they even got to walk the ‘green carpet’ outside and were  interviewed by numerous journalists.

‘We got to see so many famous people including JJ Abrams – who introduced us – Richard Curtis and I got to see director Adam McKay, who I am a huge fan of.’

Ahead of playing their ‘once in a lifetime’ gig and flying out to LA, the duo rehearsed down in Connolly’s of Leap with the help of Sam McNicholl and they received financial help from Culture Ireland to help cover the flights and accommodation.

‘We landed in LA on Monday March 21st and we had a few days out around Hollywood and they brought us to lunch at the legendary Marquee Hotel. I’m a huge music fan so I got to see loads of famous venues too. I also got to make some interesting contacts with people who work in the TV and film industry so hopefully we can do some work with them.’

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