Blame it all on his roots. Garth Brooks has threatened to pull out of all five Dublin shows after the city council refused to give him a licence for more than three. Now, unless my memory has gone badly wrong, the original plan was to have Garth playing one, or maybe two, gigs in Dublin, but that increased to three, then four and finally five due to popular demand.
Greed in other words. Garth’s finely-tuned antennae detected that there are enough idiots in this country to keep a bad country singer like him in business for the rest of his life and he decided he was going to ride that electric bull like there’s no tomorrow. Yee-Haw!
Unfortunately for him, for Aiken Promotions and for the Grab-All Association, the locals around Croke Park saw things differently. Sick of being stopped by stewards and policemen every time they try to enter or leave their homes, they said No. So what if four hundred thousand blow-dried culchies don’t get to listen to a bland, mediocre gobshite who isn’t fit to lick the alligator-skin boots of Guy Clarke or Rodney Crowell?
What a pity Dublin City Council saw fit to justify their refusal with a set of half-arsed excuses that only a five-year-old would believe. They refused permission for the first two nights on the grounds of noise, traffic disruption and illegal parking because, as everyone knows, that sort of thing only happens on Mondays and Tuesdays. The rest of the week should be just fine.
They also cited potential antisocial behaviour, because of course, as we all know, the over-fifties go completely crazy at the start of the week, before their meds get a chance to kick in.
Why didn’t Dublin City Council just come straight out and ban the whole thing on the grounds that Garth Brooks is a twat, the same as his fans, and they don’t want Dublin overrun with half a million screaming Bridies for a full week, as if the All-Irelands aren’t bad enough?
Why not tell the truth?
Why not strike a blow for music and musicians everywhere by declaring Dublin a Brooks-free zone, now and forever? And while they’re at it, maybe they could extend the ban to Bono.
For us, it is five shows or none at all, according to Garth Brooks.
Good. It’s none at all, then.