Updated: 04/08/17 : 05:29:35
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The saddest obit of summer 'seventeen'

By Eugene McGloin

SLIGO LIVE never had him as their star guest 'tho he would have singed the memory cells with his singing.

But a few phone booths, too, might have been big enough to hold the audience for this superman.

He sang for the Queen of England but also blew the mind of some Beatles lucky enough to be there.

He lived on an island and never gave interviews. He sold a million records, a voice and a guitar.

The BBC Breakfast Time studio and the coveted cover of Rolling Stone magazine were all his in a short life. 

Beat Path

Business leaders, if they knew him, would say 'there, you see, that proves the dictum.'

The dictum of Success, which says that if you can build a better mousetrap, though you live deep in the woods, the world will find you and beat a path to your door.

The best known national paper in this young man's country said he is ''the greatest voice this continent has ever produced.''

Yet his death last week saw his local newspapers highlight not his singing but his university doctorate. (Eat your heart out, Dr Brian Cowen).

Robbie Robertson, of Canada First Nation stock, spoke the salient sentiment well in his song: ''You'll like it now, but learn to LOVE it later.''

Kindred Spirit

In those lines he might have been describing his kindred spirit on the far side of the globe, now gone.

But the voice of any singer is for Ever, as long as even one person hears it and stays enchanted.

Joe Dolan, Maria Callas, Tom Dunphy, Rory Gallagher, Paul Robeson, Margaret Barry, John Lennon, Jimi Hendrix, Elizabeth Cotten, Johnny Cash, Israel K, Maisie McDaniel, La Bolduc, Brendan O'Dowda, Leonard Cohen, Mother Maybelle. 

The list is endless. Endless, endless enchantment and usually something for 'everybody in the audience.'

Brought Fame

The man who has just died in his Forties didn't see Fame coming late in his young life.

He didn't see at all. He was blind. One of the plaintive songs which brought Fame down his beaten path was about being blind since birth.

He had a story to tell. Some story. But Elvis Costello reminded us too that 'radio is in the hands of such a lot of Fools' -- so well paid, some of them.

This obit will serve the memory of this special singer best if it leaves you searching the Internet for his name and to listen, loud, to his songs.  Goodbye Gurrumul.