RememberRory to mark 20th anniversary of guitarists death

June 12th, 2015 10:50 AM

By Southern Star Team

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AT 1.10pm on this Friday (June 12th), Cork’s radio stations – Red FM, 96fm, C103 Cork and UCC 98.3FM – will simultaneously play Rory Gallagher’s ‘Tatto’d Lady’. Shandon bells will also play a few notes and, as well as a live rendition of the song from a tribute act in Rory Gallagher Plaza at Paul Street, Cork, there will also be a reading of Louis de Paor’s evocative poem on Gallagher. Basically, Rory Gallagher will ring out all over the city.

The Lord Mayor of Cork, Mary Shields, is urging Cork people to get behind the initiative. It is hoped that the city’s buses, bars, restaurants, shops, shopping centres, etc will tune into one of the participating radio stations at 1.10pm for this five-minute sound event.

Cork City FC will also take to the pitch at Turners Cross on the 12th to the sound of a Gallagher tune.

Members of the public and business owners can indicate their support through and via Twitter using the #RememberRory hashtag.

Rory Gallagher passed away on June 14, 1995, at the age of 47. He has sold more than 30 million albums, and as well as being Ireland’s first international guitar hero, is still name-checked as a major influence by the likes of Ed Sheeran, Slash and Brian May.

The #RememberRory event is being organised by Cork City Council and Camden Palace Hotel community arts centre.

Speaking recently, Lord Mayor of Cork, Mary Shields, said: ‘Rory is synonymous with Cork. His loss at such a young age was a loss to music, a multitude of fans worldwide, to Cork itself but most of all to his beloved family. We remember his passing with great sadness but celebrate his outstanding legacy with enormous pride. We have always been and always and will continue to be proud to call him a Corkonion.’

Benny McCabe, proprietor of several bars in Cork, is one of the publicans whose premises will be tuning in on the 12th.

‘I’m delighted to be taking part in this. Growing up in Cork in the 1970s, Rory Gallagher was a hero of mine and had a huge influence on music fans in the city. Later in life as I worked through so many late nights in the bar trade, I particularly felt a strong connection to his tune, “A Million Miles Away”. At the Rising Sons Brewery, we’ve even named our Steeple Hemp Amber Ale after a line from the song,’ said McCabe.

Dave MacArdle of Red FM, one of the participating radio stations said: ‘Seeing as we share the same two burning passions, for Cork and for music, all of us at RedFM are thrilled to be a part of a moment that will see Leeside united in memory of a proud Corkman, an iconic rock star and, according to no less than Jimi Hendrix (who knew a thing or two about wielding an ‘axe’), the world’s greatest guitar player, Rory Gallagher. We both welcome and urge all to join us in that moment to #RememberRory on Friday 12th and send our thoughts and best wishes to his family on the eve of the 20th anniversary of his sad passing. Always to be missed, never to be forgotten.’

Cork-born poet Louis de Paor, director of the Centre for Irish Studies at the National University of Ireland, Galway, is a longterm Gallagher fan, and is delighted that ‘A Poem for Rory Gallagher’ will be read as part of the event.

‘I can think of no other musician or artist who gave as much of himself to his audience. The poem wonders whether he fully realised how much that meant to those of us who were at the receiving end of his reckless generosity,’ said De Paor.

On the evening of the 12th, Cork City FC are at home to Bray Wanders at Turners Cross and are taking to the field to the sound of a Gallagher song, instead of their usual tune, ‘After All’ by the Frank & Walters. Ashley Keating of the Frank & Walters didn’t mind his band being dropped to the bench on this occasion:

‘It’s great that City are taking to the pitch to a Rory song tonight and we’re more then happy for “After All” to be rested!

‘The importance of Rory Gallagher to Cork and Irish music cannot be overstated, the man was a genius pure and simple and he paved the way for all that came after. It’s unbelievable to think 20 years have passed since he left us, yet he is still talked about daily and still relevant wherever music is loved. Ali may have coined the phrase but Rory is, The Greatest!’

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