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Friday on my mind
Gavin Friday is among the most artistically ambitious Irish musicians of the past thirty years. With a superb new album, entitled catholic, under his belt, he talks about the death of his father, the breakup of his marriage, the end of the Prunes, working with Naomi Campbell, Courtney Love and Cillian Murphy – and the making of his finest album yet…
Olaf Tyaransen, 12 May 2011
“We basically both grew up and grew apart, and in hindsight, which comes with age, we weren’t suited to each other. A hunchback should not go out with a hunchback. A hunchback should go out with a club foot. Because you go, ‘My hunch is killing me’. ‘Mine’s fucking killing me worse than yours!’ But if it’s a club foot, you go, ‘oh is it? I don’t know what it’s like to have a club foot. Here I’ll give it a rub’ (laughs). So, you know…”
The demands and pressures of his own hectically peripatetic career didn’t help the relationship.
“She was a really, really private woman. Even in the heydays of like the ‘80s and the ‘90s when I was hanging out, in between working with U2 and working on big movies, she was like, ‘I’m just not interested in this’. Not in a negative way, just in a private way. And I respected that.
“One of the big things when we separated, and it was all legal, was like, ‘I don’t want my private life thrown around the thing’. And it’s my private life too. I actually don’t like the way media, press, TV, everything is obsessed with the personal and the private. I really am not interested in what anyone’s doing in their own life unless they’re my mates. When you look at Ronan Keating and his wife, I actually feel bad that him and her are having a tough time. I mean, will you leave them fucking alone and let them try and sort it out! And the media is coming in with these claws. They don’t really give a fuck about the children or the missus or the husband. They don’t give a fuck.”
The death of his father a few years ago also had a huge effect on him.
“We don’t get the perspective of them until they’re gone,” he says, wistfully. “I have some fond memories of my dad but there was a war; there was an ongoing battle, from day one.”
Was it physically violent?
“At times. I remember a memory of when I hit him, when I boxed back at him. And that takes some gall because mentally I can be quite full-on but as Guggi would tell you, I couldn’t fucking defend a fly because I’m not violent. But I did hit him when I was around 17, because he was just shouting at me so much. I felt like shit because I knocked him over. But he wasn’t cruel that way. There was no abuse. Nothing like that.”