Built in 1862, Ulster Hall has been a popular venue in south Belfast for over 140 years. However, during the 70's and 80's, escalating conflict with British soldiers made war-torn Belfast a place few musicians in the world would play. Indeed, the street outside the hall was known not so affectionately as "Bomb Alley!"
Gerry McAvoy: "The first night we played Belfast in '71, there was ten bombs that went off around the city as we were playing...you're always worried."
Yet every year, during the Christmas Holidays, Rory would perform there,seemingly immune to the violence that otherwise gripped the city. "Rory was accepted by all sides. I wouldn't say he was untouchable but there was an element of that. Particularly at Ulster Hall..."--Donal Gallagher.
Peter Aiken, Belfast Concert Promoter--"We worked a lot with Rory and really they didn't come any bigger...Rory could fill The Ulster Hall for a week at a time, something which any artist nowadays would find extremely difficult (to do)...Nobody will come (to Belfast and perform) now, it's impossible. There's only Gallagher here who'll do it."
So sit back as Rory returns to Ulster Hall in 1984 to play in a city often considered his "second home". To view pictures taken by Stephen Loughins of Rory's concert at Ulster Hall in 1984 click HERE.