A little farewell to Shane MacGowan... - Wishevoke

A little farewell to Shane MacGowan…

Just before November 2023 passes, Shane MacGowan from The Pogues has also left. The news wasn’t too shocking considering Shane had been in very poor health for many years, but yes, this flurry of circumstances has resulted in the Irish losing two of their most unforgiving voices in the space of a few months. Sinead and Shane. There are many articles about who Shane and the Pogues were. But as a permanent resident of Ireland and “rocking.gr’s official correspondent” from the Emerald Isle, I have to say goodbye differently. A farewell and an experience-soaked thank you.

Like another Ishmael, I too, A few years ago I had very little money in my pocket and nothing exciting to keep me in Greece, luck brought me to settle in beautiful Ireland. If we’re just talking about music, I was curious to see up close how the Irish experience their musical heroes. I was under the impression that everyone would love U2 – they are world-class superstars, after all – and a close second would be Rory Gallagher and Phil Lynott, but in the end I was completely conflicted: of course everyone loves Rory and Phil. but the Irish rock religion has the Pogues as absolute gods. When it comes to U2, no one listens to them, but more on that in a moment.

Shane MacGowan

I have come across (more than once) the opinion that “Cloudy Sunday” has the power of a national anthem for the mood of the Greeks. So I remember that my first few weeks in my new country had just passed when I realized that the same force seemed to prevail here “Dirty old town”. But neither the “water-boiled” original by Ewan McColl nor the excellent but tidy version by The Dubliners. This raucous version of Shane MacGowan scowling and barking like a lapdog that he’s going to “take an ax and chop that bastard to pieces” blares out of the pubs every day.

I suppose there are good reasons why we are particularly attached to the “poets of the fringe” like Bukowski, Lemmy or Shane. These guys are just like us. Oh yes, we often love to admire and look in awe at various larger than life guys, but when someone who is just as tall as us succeeds, we feel different. Shane MacGowan was first and foremost an immigrant. A popular guy who accepted all the racism of the English – a racism that stereotypes the Irish as “stupid”, “drunk” or “crazy”. Some of the best kids from the Pogues, Fontaines DC, You spoke last year about the “micro-racism” they face in London. But the Pogues had eaten up all the dregs of real racism. This is the first reason for this band’s reverence: They are the poor representatives who praised Irish culture in a hostile environment.

Shane MacGowan

And that’s why there’s no comparison between Shane and Bono: the Irish hate being pointed out and don’t like fanatics or digging up old wounds. On the other, The heart of their culture is the Irish pub: Something similar to maybe the old coffeehouse. All social activities still take place in the pub today. People sing, make contacts, argue about politics and retell old stories – often at the same time. Well, the Pogues always played like a pub, their Celtic punk never left their spirit and Shane MacGowan sang his stories – of alcohol, of love, of immigration or war – always with full class consciousness, but without any inclination to be superior as the others. The Pogues are the pub rock version, the Irish soul rock version. They don’t belong on stage, they’re the guys from the next table.

So it wasn’t “Sunday Bloody Sunday” that united the Irish; “Rivers of Whiskey”, and it’s not because they’re a little “crazy” and “crazy”. It is their way of comforting themselves, forgetting their problems and exorcising the misfortunes and mistakes of the past. First and foremost, they want to feel good at their party, make fun of themselves, sing, but also keep the idea of ​​hope. As paradoxical as it may sound, Shane MacGowan played for me the role of guide and tour guide into the reality of immigration. By watching him, I began to understand the people around me. And the truth is that everyone here in Ireland, locals and well-adjusted immigrants alike, has a little bit of Shane MacGowan in them.

As a stranger in his own country, I would like to say goodbye and also thank Shane MacGowan. I’m sure he would hate rude goodbyes too. A simple one SlAtnot it is certainly preferable, and let it all be so, A good reason to listen to The Pogues’ albums again – these are also classics of pop culture. I will ignore the post-capitalism around me and hold on to the knowledge that at our core we are all travelers of happiness asking for simple things, and I will use the death of Shane MacGowan as an opportunity to listen to some of his musical gems for the second time: The ““I am a man you don’t meet every day”The “Thousands sail”my favorite “A pair of brown eyes” or the days that are the “best Christmas song ever.” “Fairytale of New York”. Come, Sláinte, let us remain immortal in our poverty and let our enemies flee.

PS: This text would not have been written without the apostle’s suggestion, sláinte for you too!

Shane MacGowan

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