Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

People they are writing until the ink turns green Trying to ruin my reputation send it to a magazine

Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

Postby JimLED » 28 Jul 2011, 05:09

Just found this inside of my PC.
I think most of the answers you will find interesting.


"These are the first batch of questions that I sent over to Donal Gallagher. I am hoping these don't provoke too many additional questions, but if they do, they do!
Obviously since we set this up, other qestions have been submitted. Please hang fire on all of these and we'll get this going again sometime soon.
It will be best if we get one new thread up for the next batch, and I'll sort that in the not too distant.


Do you know what ever happened to the guitar Monica bought him that he traded in for the Strat?


I’m unsure as to which instrument you are referring too, if you mean the ‘acoustic’ my mother bought for Rory we still have this but have no knowledge of Rory’s first electric after it was traded into Crowely’s Music store.

What movies and or actors are Rory's favourite? What movies do you remember seeing with Rory as youngsters that both of you enjoyed?


Too many to list and wouldn’t wish for omissions but this is something that will be added to in time. Meantime, here are some names; (A) Actors: Orson Welles, Dennis Hopper, Marlon Brando, Montgomery Clift, Alain Delon, Anthony Quinn, Catherine Deneuve, Spencer Tracy, Woody Allen, Burt Lancaster, Marilyn Monroe, Robert Mitchum, Trevor Howard, Rod Steiger, Richard Burton, Liz Taylor, etc. Movies: The American Friend, Charley Varrick, Bad Day at Black Rock, Sleuth, On The Waterfront, The Bicycle Thief, The Third Man, Citizen Kane, Cul-de-sac, La Strada, Maltese Falcon, Seventh Samurai, The Sweet Smell of Success, High Noon, etc.

(B).’Purple Noon’ with Alain Delon (the original Talented Mr. Ripley), which was written by Patricia Highsmith (a favorite author of my brother). After seeing this film at the Ritz cinema, Cork, I could tell that it had an enormous effect on Rory and would have established his love of Continental cinema. Other films we would have liked; ‘Guns of Navarone’ ,’The Wild Bunch’, ’On The Waterfront’, all the Cagney / Bogart/ Edward G. Robinson gangster films, any of the ‘rock & roll’ movies i.e. ‘The Girl Can’t Help It’, ‘Jailhouse Rock’, etc.

What happened to the amp that caught fire in ST Louis? Did you rebuild it or did you trash it?


The Fender vintage ‘bassman’ (’58) was rebuilt, miraculously; it was just the four 10” speakers, baffle-board, some valves and the front fabric that needed replacing.

How many albums did Rory have and what where some of the groups/titles?


Still counting, estimate about 2,500 vinyl + cd’s and cassettes (no count) ‘The Buddy Holly Story’, (was the first album Rory got) What’s Shakin’ (Electra Records sampler) Dylan (Blonde On Blonde, was a particular favourite), all Beatles, Stones, The Big Three, John Lee Hooker, Sonny Boy Williamson, Slim Harpo, Love, lots of jazz; Ornette Coleman, Eric Dolphy … will try to provide a fuller list at a later date!

Being a tour manager, and seeing just about everything you could imagine, what advice would you give the upstart bands of today?


Be nice to people on the way up as you may need them on the way down.

What do you think of the bands/music business of today?


The access to music, instruments and information has changed the culture of things, I think that the ‘pop’ video culture has evolved into something else and I am encouraged by the attitude of some young people and musicians who can now discern between what is phooey and sincere music.

How you like to see Rory's music carried on?


Played live and for mainstream radio to change it’s format attitude and give credit, where credit is due.

How is Tom O'Driscoll, we love that guy!


Tom is well and continues to work with me at Strange Music and sends his best wishes.

Are you ever going to write a bio, or auto biography?


Yes, quite soon, finding the time has been the problem, I wouldn’t want or need to have someone else write for me and turn out a ‘cash-in’ book like Peter Chrisp for McAvoy and not research the subject, the facts, dates properly, not to con people by fabricating things that never happened. I think this so-called book is one of the greatest injustices done to Rory and my family, it’s a shame and a wasted opportunity. ’Loose Talk’. Peter Chrisp never met Rory nor did he call my office to check his facts, yet tried to portray that Tom and I gave quotes or interviews.

Did you run the sound board at some of Rory's gig's?


Yes, I started with Taste we only used a Phillips amp with four channels, initially, this went through two ‘Hurley’ boxes each had 8x10” speakers (this Rory had inherited from the showband). Eventually, this was doubled up, by linking into a second similar system. The system should have been upgraded but no funding was available from the manager. When Rory went solo in’71 we bought a Stramp system (Hamburg), which I kept upgrading until we had a very nice custom set-up (12 channel stereo desk which had two fold-back panels out of which I ran a separate front vocal p.a. and use this also to boost solos), in fact much of ‘Irish Tour ‘74’ was recorded from the board as Ronnie Lane’s mobile had difficulties getting across to Ireland due to the ‘troubles’ and was only available for one night in the end) but by the mid ‘76 it became more practical to hire p.a. systems. Also, the demand on my time business-wise meant I couldn’t stay on the desk but I had guys like Phil McDonnell, Joe Herilhy (now sound engineer for U2 and R.E.M.)in the crew and they new the ‘Rory’ sound.

How would you describe the influence Rory had on bands then and today?


Always difficult to speculate, my impression is that he is universally admired for his sense of musical integrity, his admiration for other true musicians. Oddly, I have just watched an episode of ‘Hollyoaks’ (a U.K. teenagers soap) in which a key character is purchasing a guitar in a store, when quizzed by his girlfriend as to his motive for this he tells her that it’s because he wishes to play just like Rory Gallagher, she retorts, is he with Oasis, he then goes on to explain who Rory was, etc. and sites the respect he had from other musicians and that is what he wanted to emulate, the saga continues !

I'd like to know Rory's exact time of birth.


Sorry, I don’t know this and with the recent passing of my mother it may now be difficult to ascertain, will try though.

Does Donal cruise this site and if he does, what does he think of it (& us)?


Frankly, I occasionally observe though somehow I feel I am intruding but I am conscious of the need for more information and detail. Recently, I have taken on some help to assist with getting more material on to the site, so improvements will come on stream soon.

What do you think about the books that have been written about Rory so far?


Jean-Noel Coghe’s book is sincere appraisal from a Continental perspective, it was penned in French and whilst a good translation I feel some of the language ‘colour’ may have suffered. Dan Muise’s book is also good, only, I think it dwells on the negative a little to me there are a few factual errors that should have been corrected in advance.

I have nothing but contempt for Peter Chrisp’s ‘Riding Roughshod’ that he wrote for Gerry McAvoy, it is a terrible insult to Rory’s memory and is such that I have placed the matter with lawyers who are dealing with it. There is so much wrong with ‘Riding Roughshod’ that (when legal issues are resolved) separately I shall show how badly fabricated, composed and inaccurate the comic is. When the author has to resort to ‘cut and paste’ from magazines it proves their ignorance and lack of knowledge on the subject. Coming from a guy who trades a living as a ‘Band of Friends’ so called, when they played in Cork no one would bother to make contact with Rory’s mother and in the book McAvoy falsely tries to endear himself as a family friend. To fabricate things about my father is unforgivable and state that Rory wouldn’t attend our father’s funeral is a falsehood, we both did, we didn’t fight over it has suggested and we were certainly not in America, in fact, I recently found Rory’s diaries from that time with his travel details, etc. To suggest that Rory wouldn’t sign for Warners because the guy (Russ Shaw) was gay is a absolute lie, in truth Chrysalis ‘poached’ Russ from Warners (their distributor at that time)so as to impress Rory to sign for them. For McAvoy to be putting on the ‘poor mouth’ is absurd, funny that his selective ‘financial’ memory works to suit the books needs, ‘Used To Be’.

I have read Rory's birth year was 1948 and I have read it was 1949. Also I have read Donals birthdate as 1950 and from another source 1951. Astrological curiosity! (Rory would understand)


Rory was born in 1948.

Has there been any progress on the movie? I seem to recall Donal had ideas several years ago for a biography-type movie. Didn't Donal think John Cusack would be the actor to portray Rory because of a similarity in their appearance? I wonder who could be asked to play Donal?


Firstly, the definitive documentary has to be completed and is about 75% there and should be ready for the coming year. Following that a bio-pic could be done, I have had various conversations and advise with film people on this, notably with casting agents John and Ros Hubbard (Commitments, Lord of the Rings, King Kong, Taggart, etc.)so that element would be good as one could get but the difficulty can be that it is easier to get it wrong than right. There was a lot of great humour with my brother and I’d like to see that shine through also. Perhaps with the right script someone such as Cameron Crowe might take on the task of directing. It is difficult to perceive another as Rory, John Cusack is a good suggestion but not one that I made. If I would recommend a stand-in for me it would be my pal Adrian Dunbar.

I'd like to ask Donal what he thinks we (his fans) can do to perpetuate Rory's guitar and songwriting excellence, (apart from just telling everybody you know about him!). I just think that not enough people know about his incredible ability. I know Donal said once that it seemed as if Rory had been "airbrushed out of rock music history". How can we change that?


I think Rory’s loyal fans have been incredible and deserve much praise and just keep up the good work. It is very much the record company’s duty to get the job done but you compete for their attention. I believe Rory’s presence will continue it’s rise, people like the organic nature of how his name is treated and I am confidant that musical ‘justice’ will be achieved, many times we could have had ’cheap’ headlines (more recently with transplants being in the news) my reference to ‘being airbrushed out’ was directed at the media who thought him to be unfashionably, I know of occasions when other musicians would name-check Rory only to find the editor or journalist would drop it from the article, this was particularly prevalent in Britain and Ireland in the late 80s & 90s.
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Re: Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

Postby innuendo » 28 Jul 2011, 11:11

thanks jim. that was very interesting read
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Hopes of the young in troubled graves
'I see no day' I heard him say
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Re: Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

Postby Jay Jay » 28 Jul 2011, 11:24

Yes thanks Jim,
Good to read it again :)
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Re: Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

Postby JimLED » 28 Jul 2011, 21:15

I had 1 and 2 qa but it lost.
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Re: Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

Postby Sinner Girl » 07 Aug 2011, 21:11

Cool, Yes thanks Jim
''When I was a cowboy out on the Western Plain''

''Being back home means a lot.A bit a peace and quiet and some rest . I write all my songs at home.Its an amazing thing, the minute I get here I begin to wright'
Rory Gallagher
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Re: Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

Postby Simone67 » 09 Aug 2011, 13:06

Very interesting and informative,thank you Jim !
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Re: Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

Postby LGKpeachhead » 16 Aug 2011, 18:55

To the person asking about Rory's birthtime for astrological purposes---In Astrology there is something called chart rectification where you can sometimes quite accurately ascertain the birthtime if it is unknown by comparing transits and progressions to the chart. Many years ago I had done this for Rory's chart when I was much more into astrology and I came up with a birthtime of 1 am approximately. I just ran that chart on my computer now (1 am, 2 March 1948, Ballyshannon, Donegal, Ireland) and it gives him an Ascendant of 21 Scorpio (conjunct Chiron!), Sun at 11 Pisces in the 3rd house but at the very bottom of his chart, Moon in first house at 3 Sagittarius. He has a stellium of Mars, Saturn and Pluto in Leo in the 9th house inconjunct the Sun at the 4th house cusp.... I'll let you do the interpreting. Maybe Donal will discover some old family letters or a baby book where Monica may have put Rory's time of birth. We may never know for sure. Also, Donal himself may not like astrology and may not want the actual birthtime published for privacy reasons. I'll stick with my "approximately 1 am" time. Try it and let me know what you think!!!! --Loretta
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Re: Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

Postby innuendo » 16 Aug 2011, 21:56

welcome ON THE BOARDS loretta
I watched as fear took the old men's gaze
Hopes of the young in troubled graves
'I see no day' I heard him say
So grey is the face of every mortal
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Re: Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

Postby Jay Jay » 16 Aug 2011, 22:07

LGKpeachhead wrote:To the person asking about Rory's birthtime for astrological purposes---In Astrology there is something called chart rectification where you can sometimes quite accurately ascertain the birthtime if it is unknown by comparing transits and progressions to the chart. Many years ago I had done this for Rory's chart when I was much more into astrology and I came up with a birthtime of 1 am approximately. I just ran that chart on my computer now (1 am, 2 March 1948, Ballyshannon, Donegal, Ireland) and it gives him an Ascendant of 21 Scorpio (conjunct Chiron!), Sun at 11 Pisces in the 3rd house but at the very bottom of his chart, Moon in first house at 3 Sagittarius. He has a stellium of Mars, Saturn and Pluto in Leo in the 9th house inconjunct the Sun at the 4th house cusp.... I'll let you do the interpreting. Maybe Donal will discover some old family letters or a baby book where Monica may have put Rory's time of birth. We may never know for sure. Also, Donal himself may not like astrology and may not want the actual birthtime published for privacy reasons. I'll stick with my "approximately 1 am" time. Try it and let me know what you think!!!! --Loretta


Hi Loretta a very warm welcome to Rory's forum.

It should be surely in the Rock Hospital records Rory's time of birth..
Although it is no longer a hospital in Ballyshannon as such but a welfare home now?

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Re: Donal Gallagher Questions - Answers 2006

Postby Sinner Girl » 17 Aug 2011, 00:22

welcome ON THE BOARDS loretta
''When I was a cowboy out on the Western Plain''

''Being back home means a lot.A bit a peace and quiet and some rest . I write all my songs at home.Its an amazing thing, the minute I get here I begin to wright'
Rory Gallagher
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