Friday, December 4, 2009

RIP: Liam Clancy

St. Patrick's Day isn't the only time I listen to Irish music, and Liam Clancy--along with his brothers and Tommy Makem--was the best of all...

From the Irish Times:

Liam Clancy, the man Bob Dylan described as the "greatest ballad singer" he had ever heard has died. He was 74.

Mr Clancy died at Bon Secours Hospital in Cork after a long battle with pulmonary fibrosis - scarring of the lungs. His brother Bobby died of the same disease in 2002.

In an interview with The Irish Times in September to promote The Yellow Bittern, a film about his life, he admitted that he was on his "last legs" from the disease.

Liam was the youngest of the four Clancy brothers and Paddy, Bobby and Tom all predeceased him. Tommy Makem died two years ago.

Born in Carrick-on-Suir, Co Tipperary, Liam Clancy emigrated to the United States to join his brothers in 1956.

They began their singing careers around the pubs of Greenwich Village where they met a young Bob Dylan who has claimed them as one of his biggest influences.

Together the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem began a transatlantic phenomenon after a fortuitous break on the coast-to-coast Ed Sullivan Show in 1961 where they filled in for a guest who could not turn up.

They were then offered a record deal with Columbia and were hugely successful on both sides of the Atlantic resurrecting Irish songs such as Roddy McCorley, Brennan on the Moor and The Jug of Punch. Their ability as recording artists was matched by the strength of their live performances and their gifts as songwriters.

Filmmaker Alan Gilsenen, who made The Yellow Bittern, said Mr Clancy's passing was the "end of an era."

"He and his brothers and Tommy reclaimed an enormous amount of folk songs for Ireland, reinterpreted in them in terms of their experience in America outselling the Beatles at one stage."

BeltwayBlips: vote it up!


Eprocurement software said...

Liam will be remembered for a long time because of his contribution to the music industry.Thank you for his
music. Condolences to his family and loved ones.

Anonymous said...

when the clancy's put together their first alblum, one of them was wearing a shawl collar sweater that his mother knitted him. this was long before you could walk into a store and buy a sweater like this. the label liked it and wanted everyone to wear the same. Mrs Clancy dug in and made the boys their sweaters in time for the alblum cover photo. it became their trademark.

I don't have a drop of Irish blood in me, but when I hear the Clancy's I have to stop, listen, swing my arms, pound my fist and see if I can tuck my nuts up tight enough to hit the high harmony. Whisky helps. The clancy's paved the way for the the traditional celtic sound. Hats off to the last of em.

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