Snow Patrol's Gary Lightbody shines spotlight on local talent ahead of Bangor concert

  • WATCH: Gary Lightbody speaks to Pamela Ballantine:

Gary Lightbody has joked he will be stopping the traffic of Bangor with sheep soon - but just needs a flock.

The Snow Patrol frontman has been revelling in his new status after he was awarded the Freedom of Ards and North Down Borough. One perk for those handed the accolade allows them to parade sheep through Bangor.

The Bangor native was speaking to UTV Life's Pamela Ballantine ahead of a concert in the new city later this month which he said will be a celebration of local artists.

“Northern Irish audiences - Irish audiences in general - are the best audiences in the world.

“When I was growing up I saw two gigs in the Ulster Hall as a teenager - Nirvana and the Red Hot Chilli Peppers - but there weren’t a lot of international acts coming to Belfast at the time and now it is a stop on everybody's tour.

“Forgetting about the international scene, our home scene is flourishing beyond words. It is an extraordinary time in Northern Irish music at the moment.”

"I wanted to celebrate Bangor music as well so we have an amazing bill. David St Clements, Lucy Gaffney, the Florentinas who are all Bangor acts.

"They're amazing artists in Bangor but we had quite a few people already from Bangor in the third Ward Park so we wanted some new faces.

Speaking about being given the freedom of the Bangor, Gary said: "I'm allowed to walk sheep down the middle of the high street apparently - that's part of the thing.

"Maybe I'll get a flock of sheep and I'll be walking up and down the main street of Bangor - that'll be me.

"Anytime there's traffic problems in Bangor, it'll likely be me. You've done it to yourselves Bangor I have to say."

In the interview, Lightbody said he hopes the band will have their next album ready by next year, adding the band are working on the album "right now."

"I have made promises before. The last one might've taken seven years but we're hopefully a lot less than that this time," he told UTV Life.

The band are set to play at Bangor seafront later this month in a concert to celebrate Lightbody receiving the freedom of the borough.

You can see the full interview here.

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