Atlantic Sessions music festival to honour memory of Henry McCullough

This year's Atlantic Sessions is dedicated to legendary guitarist Henry McCullough, who died in June

One of the most popular events in the local musical calender returns next month to the north coast.

Atlantic Sessions, now in its eighth year, will showcase over 50 artists in more than 30 venues across Portrush, Portstewart and Portballintrae, with some of the finest performers from across Northern Ireland gracing the stage.

Audiences can follow music trails in intimate venues, including cafes, restaurants, pubs, coffee shops as well as more traditional music venues, with a different live performance taking place every hour and all free of charge.

The 2016 festival is dedicated to the memory of Internationally acclaimed guitarist Henry McCullough. The 72-year-old from Portstewart, who played with Paul McCartney's Wings as well as with the legendary Jimi Hendrix, passed away in June.

Live music ranges from traditional, bluegrass and americana to electronic, indie and acoustic singer-songwriters. It offers a platform for emerging talent as well as established artists from the north and an opportunity to bring their music beyond urban hubs.

This year’s festival also coincides with the Causeway Coast and Glens Restaurant Week, a culinary celebration which includes themed nights, food tours and taster menus, using the very best of fresh local and seasonal produce, with fine wines and artisan ales.

The Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Alderman Maura Hickey said Atlantic Sessions had now established itself as one of the Borough's premier live music events.

"As a tourist destination, attractions like this help us to extend our visitor season. The fantastic variety of free musical entertainment, set against our beautiful seaside locations, is a winning combination which helps to create the event's uniquely vibrant and warm atmosphere," she said.

This year’s festival is programmed by Snow Water, and its Director, Carolyn Mathers said it would celebrate Northern Ireland's "incredible music scene" and "artistic excellence".

"This year we will feature a series of new collaborations and 'In the Round' concerts exclusively for the Atlantic Sessions, seven of the NI Music Prize 2016 nominees, EP and Single launches, and audiences will have an opportunity to witness our finest singer-songwriters partner together in intimate environments," she said.

Atlantic Sessions is a Causeway Coast and Glens Funded Event, programmed by Snow Water and sponsored by Help Musicians NI. It runs from November 17-20.

For further details and to book online for free events, check out

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