Shane MacGowan , Jesus Christ and the Irish Condition

Shane MacGowan, the lead singer for the Pogues, celebrated his birthday on Christmas day.

I liked this confused tweet on an Irish expat website

62 or 63 – it doesn’t matter – let’s delight that the great man is still with us.  As Mick says

And how fitting is it that Shane MacGowan, singer of one of Ireland’s most popular Christmas song, was born on Christmas Day? If you’d asked me if he’d be on the planet in 2020 when he split with the Pogues in 1991, I’d have given you “Twenty fuckin five to one” – about as likely as the Bottle of Smoke getting up on the rails


Although widely regarded as an Irish singer, MacGowan was actually born in London to Irish parents.

“I was born in England, but only because I was born on Christmas Day,”

“My parents lived in Ireland, but in 1957 they went over to visit my father’s eldest sister, and I ended up being born in a nearby maternity hospital, down in Kent.”

“It’s a pain in the arse being born on Christmas Day, so I celebrate it on Christmas Eve, if I celebrate it at all.”

MacGowan spent the first few weeks of his life in England before being brought home to Co Tipperary.

In the 1960s, however, his parents moved the family back to England in search of work.

This year, MacGowan will celebrate his first birthday and Christmas as a married man. Earlier in 2018, he married Victoria Mary Clarke, his partner of more than three decades,

Sadly, this will be MacGowan’s third Christmas and birthday without his beloved mother. In January 2017, 87-year-old Therese MacGowan became the first person in Ireland to be killed in a car accident for the new year.

As with any December in recent memory, Shane MacGowan’s voice has been pumping out of radios around the world singing his famous ‘Fairytale of New York’ Christmas song.

This year, however, the song became hotly debated as some opposed the inclusion of the word ‘faggot’ in the Christmas tune.

MacGowan himself responded that the word ‘faggot’ was chosen to reflect the character of the person in the song, and was never meant to be derogatory to homosexuals.

Judge for yourselves

Happy birthday, Shane!

About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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