Photo: David McMahon

Pogues Singer Shane MacGowan: Dead At 65

Following ill-health and an encephalitis diagnosis, the charismatic and controversial lead singer of the Celtic punk band the Pogues, Shane MacGowan has passed away at the age of 65.

Taking to social media, his wife Victoria Mary Clarke said of MacGowan “meant the world to me”.”I don’t know how to say this so I am just going to say it. Shane… has gone to be with Jesus and Mary and his beautiful mother Therese.”

A formal statement from MacGowan’s spokesperson confirmed that the artist “died peacefully at 3.30am this morning (November 30) with his wife and and sister by his side”. “Prayers and the last rites were read during his passing.”

Born in Kent, England, in 1957, from the age of six, MacGowan was raised in Ireland where he developed a passion for traditional Irish music and literature, that would later influence his songwriting skills. In the late 1970s, Shane moved to London, where he formed the Nipple Erectors, a punk rock band that was the precursor to the Pogues.

Combining traditional Irish music with punk rock energy with MacGowan’s unique lyrical storytelling, The Pogues emerged in the early 1980s and their albums – including “Rum, Sodomy & the Lash” and “If I Should Fall from Grace with God,” – were critically acclaimed and commercially successful. Shane’s biggest hits were ‘Fairytale of New York’ and ‘A Pair of Brown Eyes’ (1987.)

In addition to his recent medical issues, the embattled musician had well-documented problems with drugs and alcohol.

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Author: Saul Goode

Photo: David McMahon