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Gary Moore. In Memoriam …

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Gary Moore. In Memoriam …

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Gary Moore, the legendary Irish rock artist and former guitarist of Thin Lizzy, has died at age 58. He was found dead hours after checking into a five-star hotel in Estepona, Costa del Sol in Spain.

The blues rock guitarist arrived at the hotel with a younger woman and was in a good mood, ordered a bottle of champagne and some brandy to enjoy the first night of what was supposed to be a six-day holiday. He died in his sleep.

Gary Moore

 

On his official website, it says: "It is with deep sorrow and regret that we have to announce that Gary Moore passed away while on holiday in Spain last night," according to US News Source.

Born in Belfast on 4 April 1952, Moore's music career started in 1968 and soon afterwards he joined up with Phil Lynott and Brian Downey to form Thin Lizzy.

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As time progressed he toured the world, sharing the stage with such blues and rock luminaries as B.B. King, Albert King, Colosseum II, Greg Lake and Skid Row (not to be confused with the glam metal band of the same name), as well as having a wonderfully successful solo career, Euro Weekly News informs.

Eric Bell, who Gary replaced in Thin Lizzy said he was "in shock" over his death. He added: "I still can't believe it. He was so robust, he wasn't a rock casualty, he was a healthy guy. He was a superb player and a dedicated musician."

Scott Gorham - who is in the band's current line-up - said: "Playing with Gary during the Black Rose era was a great experience, he was a great player and a great guy. I will miss him," Contactmusic.com reports.

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Moore grew up on a road opposite Stormont, off the Upper Newtownards Road in east Belfast and started performing at a young age, having picked up a battered acoustic guitar at the age of eight. Moore got his first good-quality guitar at the age of 14, learning to play the right-handed instrument in the standard way despite being left-handed. He moved to Dublin in 1968 at the age of 16. Moore's early musical influences were artists such as Albert King, Elvis Presley and The Beatles. Later, having seen Jimi Hendrix and John Mayall's Bluesbreakers in his home town of Belfast, his own style was developing into a blues-rock sound that would be the dominant form of his career.

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Moore's greatest influence in the early days came from guitarist Peter Green, of Fleetwood Mac fame, who was a mentor to Moore when performing in Dublin. Green's continued influence on Moore was later repaid as a tribute to Green on his 1995 album Blues for Greeny, an album consisting entirely of Green compositions. On this tribute album Moore played Green's 1959 Les Paul Standard guitar which Green had lent to Moore after leaving Fleetwood Mac. Moore ultimately purchased the guitar, at Green's request, so that "it would have a good home".

Moore released his first solo album in 1973, Grinding Stone (billed as "The Gary Moore Band"). In 1978 his solo career continued with help from Phil Lynott. The combination of Moore's blues-based guitar and Lynott's voice produced "Parisienne Walkways", which reached the Top Ten in the UK Singles Chart in April 1979 and the Thin Lizzy album Black Rose: A Rock Legend which reached number two in the UK album chart. Moore appears in the videos for Waiting for an Alibi and Do Anything You Want To.

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In 1987, Moore collaborated on the UK charity record "Let It Be", a cover of the Beatles track. Moore performed a guitar solo for inclusion on the recording, which was released under the group-name of 'Ferry Aid'. The record raised substantial funds for the survivors of the MS Herald of Free Enterprise disaster.

After a series of rock records, Moore returned to blues music with Still Got the Blues, with contributions from Albert King, Albert Collins and George Harrison. The album was well received by fans. Moore stayed with the blues format until 1997, when he decided to experiment with modern dance beats on Dark Days in Paradise; this left many fans, as well as the music press, confused. Back to the Blues saw Moore return to his tried and tested blues format in 2001: he continued with this style on Power of the Blues (2004), Old New Ballads Blues (2006), Close As You Get (2007) and Bad For You Baby (2008). Moore also contributed guitar sections to Richard Blackwood's 2000 album, You'll Love to Hate This.

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Moore died in the early hours of 6 February 2011, while on holiday at the Kempinski Hotel in Estepona, Spain. His death was confirmed by his former manager Adam Parsons.

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Last Updated (Tuesday, 17 March 2015 15:35)

 

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