A large general campsite for the revellers also housed luxury tents and a separate camping area for families, Irish food and beer trucks onsite provided better than usual festival nourishment (Prátaí from Galway and Black Donkey Brewing from Roscommon being some of the standout offerings), everyone was catered for
On Saturday (24th September), as day turned to night, American John Grant took to the Queen Medb stage to screams from fans who had travelled to the Roscommon countryside to see his relaxed set of career hits played from his grand piano.
It was Irish act Villagers however, who provided the powerful performance on the first evening, with main man Conor J O'Brien reciprocating the adoration, telling the crowd: “we love you madly!”
The more intimate Luna stage saw turns from Jealous of the Birds, the singer-songwriter from Northern Ireland, and A. Smyth from Dublin, while outside under the estate’s trees, flame dancers lit up the night adding to the festival atmosphere.
Paul Noonan, best known as frontman of Bell X1 and now HousePlants summed up the festival perfectly: “It's a brave thing to do, to start a festival…and we salute everybody here at Night and Day”, getting the audience going with an electro-dance set lifted mostly from their 2021 album 'Dry Goods'.
Perennial Irish favourite Cathy Davey who “bought a new woolly jumper for the event” was at home on the Queen Medb stage playing her guitar and tambourine as the crowd happily sang along.
Soda Blonde, fronted by Faye O’Rourke and made up of most of the former members of Irish band Little Green Cars had the grounds of Clonalis House sounding like never before with anthemic hits and her crystal clear voice from 2021's 'Small Talk' including 'In the Heat of the Night', 'Terrible Hands' and 'Tiny Darkness'.
Orla Gartland was in usual top form with a string of catchy singalong tracks opening with 'Pretending' and including 'More Like You', 'I Go Crazy' and 'Why Am I Like This?' Before checking to make sure that someone, Madison, wasn’t in the crowd; “I only play it in places where I’m definitely sure she’s not in, this is a song about my therapist. The chances of her being in Roscommon are very slim.”
The smaller Sol stage played host to comedians and political discussions from Irish TDs over the weekend, as well as transforming into a dance tent with DJs playing late into the night.
There were many more acts to entertain the crowds over the weekend including Columbia Mills, Amy Montgomery and The Mary Wallopers, making Night and Day the perfect event for the late-festival calendar. A most welcome new addition to the Irish festival circuit; bring on Night and Day 2023!
For all things Night and Day festival, visit https://nightandday.ie
Words: Darren McLoughlin and Christina Keogh.
Check out our gallery from the show below. All photos by Darren McLoughlin.