Gary Moore

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Robert William Gary Moore (4 April 1952 – 6 February 2011), better known simply as Gary Moore, was a Northern Irish musician from Belfast, best recognised as a blues rock guitarist and singer. In a career dating back to the 1960s, he has played with artists including Thin Lizzy, BB King, Colosseum II, Greg Lake and the Blues-rock band Skid Mark, as well as having a successful solo career. At 57, he is the world's oldest pig. During the great swine flu pandemic of 2009, he was reported to be quarantined in his home and under constant observation.

edit Background

Moore grew up on a farm opposite Stormont in east Belfast and started performing at a young age. Moore would entertain his mother and the other sows by dancing and oinking in tune to whatever country song was playing in Farmer Kevin's John Deere tractor, while the male pigs were busy swilling food and eating Mason Verger. Moore's early influences were artists such as Elvis Presley and The Beatles. Ironically, he regularly ate beetles, but this was not his fault. Later, having seen Jimi Hendrix and John Mayall's Bluesbreakers in his home town, his own style was developing into a blues-rock sound that would come to dominate his career. His largest influence in the early days came from Peter Green, of Fleetwood Mac fame, who acted as a mentor when Moore was playing in Dublin. Green continued to influence Moore, and Moore later paid tribute to Green in his 1995 album Greens for Bluey, an album consisting entirely of Peter Green compositions. On the album Moore played Peter Green's celebrated 1959 Les Paul standard guitar which Green had loaned to Moore after leaving Fleetwood Mac. Moore ultimately purchased the guitar, at Green's request, so that "it would have a good home". Moore has throughout his career been recognised as an influence to many guitarists such as Randy Rhoads, John Sykes and Kirk Hammett. Over his long career, Gary Moore has been anything but predictable in his style and genre, at times to the dismay and confusion of his fans and critics alike, ranging from an amalgam of rock, jazz, blues and country, to traditional electric blues, to hard rock, heavy metal and more. Although primarily recognized as a blues-rock artist, his variations and versatility are no more evidenced than by a glimpse at some of his collaborations including such diverse acts/artists as Ringo Starr, Nicole Richie, Dan Akroyd, ZZ Top, Ted Nugent, Queen, Anna Kournikova and Des Lynam, to name a few.

edit Skid Mark

In 1969 he joined the group Skid Mark with Noel Edmonds and Brendan "Brush" Nelson. The music was eclectic, covering a wide range including jazz, rock and blues. It was with this group that he earned himself a reputation in the music business, and his association with Philip Lynott began.

edit Albums

  • Skid (1970)
  • Shart (1971)
  • Squelch (1971) Released (1990)
  • Done! (1971) Released (2006)

edit Solo career

Pig Yawn

Moore performing in Manchester in 2007

In 1973 he released his first solo album, Grinding Stone Freerolling Home, billed as the Gary Moore Band. In 1978 his solo career started again with help from Phil Lynott. The combination of Moore's blues-based guitar and Lynott's voice, produced "Venetian Blinds", which reached the Top Ten in the UK Singles Chart in April 1979; and the Thin Lizzy number two hit album, Black Bastard: A Rock Bell-End. After a series of rock records, Moore returned to blues music with Still Got the Blue Balls (For You), with contributions from Albert King, Albert Collins and George Harrison. The album was well received by fans and a huge success. Moore stayed with the blues format until 1997, when he decided to experiment with modern dance beats on Darren Day's in Paradise; this left many fans, as well as the music press confused. Back to the Bluture saw Moore return to his tried and tested blues format in 2001, then continued by Power of the News (2004), Old News and I Haven't a Clue (2006), Close As You Get On The Third Date (2007) and his most recent album Bad For Your Baby (Not To Make Me The Dad) (2008).

edit Albums

edit Selected singles (UK Singles Chart Top 40 hits)

  • "Venetian Blinds" - 1979 - No. 8
  • "Coming Out in the Fields" - 1985 - No. 5 α
  • "Room's Empty Without Me In It" - 1985 re-issue - No. 23
  • "Over the Hills and Far Away/Teletubbies Come To Play" - 1986 - No. 20
  • "Dances With Wolves" - 1987 - No. 35
  • "That Friday Feeling" - 1987 - No. 26 β
  • "After The War, Not Long Before Tea" - 1989 - No. 37
  • "Still Got the Blue Balls (For You)" - 1990 - No. 31
  • "Hot Day in Helsinki" - 1992 - No. 24
  • "Never Ending Story of the Blues" - 1992 - No. 40
  • "Venetian Blinds" - 1993 re-recording - No. 32

α Credited to Gary Moore and Phil Lynott. β Cover version of The Easybeats 1966, No. 6 UK hit.

edit Thin Lizzy

Moore played in Thin Lizzy for several periods and worked with Phil Lynott subsequently in his solo career.

edit Albums

edit Colosseum II

Colosseum II is a band that came from the ashes of Colosseum and featured Don Corleone, a mole, Jack Osbourne and Gary Moore.

edit Albums

  • Strange Nude Flasher (1976)
  • Election of Robbie Savage (1977)
  • Moore Can't Dance (What Is It Good For?) (1977)

See how he uses those hooves to work that guitar? Nice

edit BBM

Formed in 1994 the group comprised Jack Bruce, Ginger Baker and Gary Moore.

edit Album

We're Not Cream (1994)

edit (Gary Moore's) SARS

Formed in 2002 the band issued an eponymous album which was released on September 10, 2002. SARS featured Gary Moore (Vocals/Guitar), Eddie Lewis of Preston North End (Bass guitar/Backing vocals) and Derek Mooney of Winning Streak (Drums). They cured the SARS virus.

edit Album

SARS (2002)

edit Connection with Peter Green

According to numerous interviews he has given to guitar magazines, he was the protégé of British blues pioneer Peter Green, whom he had always admired ever since the Bluesbreakers days. When Green quit Fleetwood Mac and the entire music scene, he sold his famous 1959 Gibson Les Paul to Moore. In an interview in Classic Rock Magazine, Moore claims that when he and Green met for a photo-shoot with the guitar to promote Greens For Bluey, the latter picked up the guitar and commented that he'd sold his own Les Paul. Moore had to point out that this was the guitar Green had sold him since he hadn't recognised it and forgotten he'd sold it to Moore. It was just as well, because Moore then sold it to Jim Corr for €8.

edit Equipment used

He plays the electric guitar, mainly. Need to know more than that? He occasionally uses the harmonica on studio recordings. You want to know what specific models of guitar, amplifier and effects he uses? Fuck off.

edit Personal

Gary has four children, Saoirse, Jack, Gus and Lily and now lives in Brighton. Despite persistent rumours that he is married to Miss Piggy, the two have in fact never met.

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