- 22 Jul 20
Bronagh Gallagher shares her reflections on Rory Gallagher's legacy, as part of our special 25th anniversary tribute to the legendary Irish guitarist.
Bronagh Gallagher is a renowned singer, songwriter and actress from Derry – appearing in classics like The Commitments and Pulp Fiction, and recently receiving an IFTA nomination for 'Actress In A Lead Role - Film' for A Bump Along The Way.
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My cousins in Derry played in local bands – one brilliant trad/rock group called Thundering Down, and one called King Rat, who supported Rory Gallagher once. They loved Rory and would go see him in The Embassy Ballroom. So as a very small kid, I’d heard them talking about him. There was such excitement around those conversations. I loved that we had the same name.
Hearing music by Irish artists in Derry in the ‘70s and ‘80s always evoked a sense of a coming freedom. In my mind, it was an escape from the sadness and the war outside. Rory’s voice always sounded so unique and soulful. I didn’t know what an extraordinary guitarist and writer he was, but as I got older, I realised he was as heavyweight as it gets.
I love Rory for his talent but there was more to it than that. The blues is the universal voice of pain and passion. I’m only learning – but to take it from the masters of the blues and make it your own, and ROCK that hard - that was Rory. He was the very pure essence and spirit of the blues.
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The special Rory Gallagher 25th Anniversary Issue of Hot Press is available to order below – featuring reflections on Rory's legacy from President Michael D. Higgins, Imelda May, Johnny Marr, Mumford & Sons, Mick Fleetwood, Steve Van Zandt, Slash and many more.