A few hours before JD Roots gig on Friday night, we got the chance to catch a glimpse of the bands’ rehearsals in Temple Bar, precisely in Temple Lane music studios two steps away from The Button Factory.
As we enter Temple Lane music studios around 5pm this Wednesday, members from Delorentos and We Cut Corners are already at work in a room where you can barely find a space to watch due to the equipment: drum kits, synthesizers, midi keyboard, countless guitars, bass guitars, amplifiers and even a banjo. Conall Ó Breacháin from We Cut Corners is singing a gentle and heartfelt rendition of U2’s classic ballad ‘Stay’ surrounded by the Delorentos concentrated. Ó Breacháin and another (probably Ronàn Yourel, I can’t see him from my vantage point) are sharing the verses and harmonising in the last seconds, with such natural it’s hard to realize at this moment they are not long-time band buddies. Two other rehearsals of the song just to make sure bassist Niall Conlan can cover the melody with a sweet humming and then we take a short pause.
The Minutes arrive and shake a few hands. We hear jokes about who does the best of the work, who is sleeping in the corner, all in good fun, cause it’s easy to see it’s not three bands discovering each other, it’s just a bunch of friends getting along musically and in real life. Then The Delorentos decide to rehearse one of their own song, ‘Bullet in a gun’, and after two tries, Ó Breacháin (from We cut corners) takes place in front of the second drum set and plays with the energetic style anyone who heard him before can imagine, hitting the toms and improvising a bit to fit the whole. Nobody asks questions about him adding up to the band, Conlan even tells him the parts to accentuate and the ones to play soft, and it’s quickly decided that there’s gonna be two drummers on stage for the song. It’s already time to go and leave the men to work. In a short hour we can already tell JD Roots is going to be a well-prepared gig, a night celebrating Irish music but also Dublin music scene of today, made of friendships, musical connections and respect.