By John Ensor •
Updated: 30 Nov 2023 • 18:10
Credit: Redadeg/Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0
THE legendary Pogues frontman died today, tributes from politicians, fellow celebrities and fans have poured in.
On Thursday, November 30, the world lost Shane McGowan, one of Ireland’s most iconic singers, following a long-fought battle against viral encephalitis.
Shane, aged 65, was released from hospital only last week, but his wife Victoria Mary Clarke posted a message on Instagram to confirm this afternoon that he had sadly passed away and paid her own heartfelt respects: ‘I am blessed beyond words to have met him and to have loved him and to have been so endlessly and unconditionally loved by him and to have had so many years of life and love and joy and fun and laughter and so many adventures.
‘There’s no way to describe the loss that I am feeling and the longing for just one more of his smiles that lit up my world. . .thank you for your presence in this world you made it so very bright and you gave so much joy to so many people with your heart and soul and your music. You will live in my heart forever.’
Taoiseach Leo Varadkar posted: ‘Sorry to hear that Shane McGowan has passed. He was an amazing musician and artist. His songs beautifully captured the Irish experience, especially the experience of being Irish abroad: Shane MacGowan, Fairytale of New York singer, dies aged 65.’
Ireland’s President Higgins issued a statement in tribute: ‘Shane will be remembered as one of music’s greatest lyricists. So many of his songs would be perfectly crafted poems, if that would not have deprived us of the opportunity to hear him sing them.’
He added: ‘Born on Christmas Day, there was perhaps some form of destiny which led Shane to writing ‘Fairytale of New York’, the timeless quality of which will surely mean that it will be listened to every Christmas for the next century or more.’
‘It was a great honour for me, as President of Ireland, to present Shane with a lifetime achievement award in the National Concert Hall in January 2018 as we marked his 60th birthday. A richly deserved honour,’ he concluded before offering his deepest condolences to Shane’s family.
Shane’s sister, Siobhan simply quoted the lyrics from one of Pogues many memorable songs: ‘So I walked as day was dawning, as small birds sang and leaves were falling, where we once watched the row boats landing on the Broad Majestic Shannon.’
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Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina.
He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.
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