Saturday, December 17, 2011

Rock News Artist Of The Year #5: GARY MOORE

As part of the 2011 hennemusic Rock News Awards – recognizing the biggest rock news stories and artists of the year - hennemusic is counting down the Top 10 rock news artists of the year.

The Top 10 are determined by music fans: numbers are based on the combined total page views of the top 50 hennemusic rock news stories of the past twelve months.

Rock News Artist Of The Year #06 – JOURNEY
Rock News Artist Of The Year #07 – MOTLEY CRUE
Rock News Artist Of The Year #08 – METALLICA
Rock News Artist Of The Year #09 – JAMES DURBIN
Rock News Artist Of The Year #10 – PEARL JAM

The 2011 hennemusic Rock News Award winners will be announced on Tuesday, December 20 at

Rock News Artist Of The Year #5 – GARY MOORE

Among the sad news this year from the music community was the death of Gary Moore.

The guitarist passed away in his sleep February 6 from a heart attack while on holiday in Spain; he was 58.

Moore died hours after checking into the Kempinski Hotel at Estepona with his girlfriend, at the start of a planned six-day break from the road.

A hotel source reportedly told UK tabloid The Sun, "They were going to eat at the restaurant but it was closed, so they had a sandwich at the bar with a bottle of champagne. They went for a stroll, then back to the bar where Gary had brandies. He seemed fine when he left around 11pm."

Originally from Belfast, Moore picked up the guitar at the age of 8; interestingly, he learned to play right-handed even though he was a lefty.

At 16, Gary moved to Dublin to join Skid Row, which included singer Phil Lynott at the time. Moore impressed Fleetwood Mac’s Peter Green so much that he helped get Skid Row a recording contract.

Moore left Skid Row to start his own band, releasing an album and touring, before eventually joining Thin Lizzy – for the first time – in early 1973.

Moore would bounce in and out of Lizzy a few times through the years, and it’s his contributions to the 1974 album “Nightlife” – including the solo for “Still In Love With You,” that raised his profile to new levels.

Moore’s solo work was blues-rock and blues-based, and he’ll be remembered as one of the tastiest players ever to work a six string.

A statement from Eagle Rock Entertainment, his most recent record label, said Moore was "the consummate musician acknowledged as one of the finest guitarists that the British Isles has ever produced."

"In a career that dates back to the 1960s, there are few musical genres that he has not turned his adroit musical hand to, and on top of his acclaimed solo work he has graced the line-ups of several notable rock bands, Thin Lizzy, Colosseum II and Skid Row, to name but three,"
the label said.

Tributes from musicians and fans poured in from all over the globe.

“Playing with Gary during the Black Rose era was a great experience, he was a great player and a great guy,” said Thin Lizzy guitarist Scott Gorham. “I will miss him.”

“I am in total shock,”
said Thin Lizzy drummer Brian Downey. “He will always be in my thoughts and prayers and I just can't believe he is gone.”

“To say that his death is a tragic loss doesn’t seem to give it the justice it deserves,”
said Ozzy Osbourne. “We’ve lost a phenomenal musician and a great friend. Rest In Peace, Gary.”

“RIP Gary Moore. One of the greatest British Rock & Roll guitarists. There will never be another Gary Moore. Sad times,”
tweeted Slash.

“I have great memories of Gary on tour in Thin Lizzy with Queen: always smiling, very cheerful and…too young to die,” said Queen drummer Roger Taylor. “It’s very sad. But I think his music will live on. Virtuosity is something we really don’t have now: there are lots of great bands, but the emphasis just isn’t on that anymore. In those days, it was all about how great you were; there were so many virtuosos and he was definitely one of them. He was a star player.”

Bob Geldof described Moore as one of Ireland's musical legends, saying, "One of the greatest blues players of all time. Van Morrison, Rory Gallagher and Gary Moore - the glorious trinity of the Irish blues men."

Thin Lizzy Thin Lizzy

Thin Lizzy – Still In Love With You

Gary Moore Gary Moore Gary Moore – Parisienne Walkways One Night In Dublin: A Tribute To Phil Lynott DVD