Christy Moore turns 65 today, traditionally the age of retirement in Ireland. However, it’s highly unlikely that he’ll be hanging up his guitar and bodhrán for a while yet. In his early twenties, Christy decided to withdraw from a career in banking to become a folk singer and has become one of Ireland’s most respected and popular musicians over the last four decades. He’s been a solo performer for most of his career, but the man from Kildare was also a founding member of Planxty and Moving Hearts, two influential groups from the early seventies and early eighties respectively. Throughout his solo career, his repertoire has drawn upon a combination of sources: traditional music; songs by established and unknown songwriters; and his own distinctive material. Like most folk singers, he has sung love songs as well as songs about key issues of the day: emigration, unemployment, alcoholism, war and, frequently, marginalised peoples. He has also sang in a lighthearted way about the building of an airport in rural Ireland, alcoholism (again) and the Irish football team’s adventures at the 1988 European Football Championships. Exactly one year ago, his most recent album release, called Listen, knocked The Fame by Lady GaGa off the top of the Irish album charts. From that album, you can listen to his take on a song written by Roger Waters as a tribute to former Pink Floyd member Syd Barrett. Happy birthday, Christy!
Image courtesy of christymoore.com