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February 6th, 2011 - Blues lost a true legend in Rock and Roll and the Blues

Gary Moore has died. The legendary Belfast-born guitarist of the band Skid Row passed away in his sleep last night while in Spain.

He was only a kid when he picked up the guitar and began playing. By the age of 16, he had already made a name for himself in his home of Belfast, as one of the best musicians around. He then moved from Belfast to Dublin to join a four-piece band. But soon thereafter, one member of Skid Row would bow out, and the group became a trio. Capitalizing on the success of the Jimmy Hendrix Experience, the trio, including Gary Moore on vocals, crafted two albums, Skid in 1970 and 34 Hours the following year, after signing with CBS Records.

The very talented Moore was more than just a rocker, a blues guitarist, and a jazz lead. The gifted Irishman was adept in a more slower, rhythmic and melodic style of playing the guitar. Long before he died, Moore worked with the legendary Bob Dylan. The group Thin Lizzy caught eye of Gary Moore, and brought him on board, thanks to frontman Philip Lynott. Despite the competitive spirit between the two musicians, they grew together as friends and cohorts. In fact, the most enduring track ever recorded with Thin Lizzy was “Still In Love With You". Even today, that remains a favorite.

Gary Moore died at 52, but his compilations, musical genius, and legend will live on in the music he created and the hearts he touched along the way. Click on the link below and listen to show 807 for a set of Gary Moore. Over 20 minutes of great guitar playing that we will miss.

Shows with Gary Moore in them

Gary MooreGary Moore is acknowledged as one of the finest musicians 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 has graced the line-ups ever several notable rock bands, Thin Lizzy, Colosseum II and Skid Row to name but three.

Gary was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on April 4th 1952. Like many others, he was turned on to rock and roll first through hearing Elvis Presley, and then via The Beatles. Seeing the likes of Jimi Hendrix and John Mayall's Bluesbreakers in his hometown in the mid-60s opened up to him the rich world of The Blues. Hearing the art of the Blues guitar performed by such lauded exponents as Peter Green fired Moore's nascent talent, and it wasn't long before he was being hailed as a teen musical prodigy. Indeed, it was Green himself who helped foster Moore's career, a debt that was repaid handsomely when Gary cut his warm and heartfelt tribute to his mentor, the 'Blues For Greeny' album, released in 1995.

Gary's first band of note, the power trio Skid Row, secured a record deal with the CBS label in 1970. By this time, Gary had moved to Dublin, and befriended Phil Lynott, who filled the vocal role with Skid Row until shortly before the CBS deal was signed. Gary cut three albums with the band, and toured the USA supporting The Allman Brothers Band, and Mountain amongst others, before he split Skid Row to embark on a solo career. This proved short-lived, as Gary was soon to reunite with Phil Lynott as replacement for Eric Bell in the Thin Lizzy line-up. Although he was in the band for a relatively brief tenure, he would rejoin their ranks following the departure of Brian Robertson in 1977, and again, finally, for the 'Black Rose' tour in 1978.

In 1979, Gary's solo career began in earnest with the evocative hit single, 'Parisienne Walkways', which pitched Gary's tasteful, blues-soaked lead guitar with a moody Phil Lynott guest vocal. The single reached the UK Top Ten in April of that year, and the subsequent album, 'Back On The Streets' was similarly well received. The late 1970s and early 80s were characterized by Gary's restless search for the best musical settings for his talents; a reunion with Phil Lynott produced the powerful 'Out In The Fields' hit single (1985). He explored his Celtic roots on the album 'Wild Frontier' (1987), but it was with the 1990 album, 'Still Got The Blues', that Gary arrived at a rich musical vein within which his creativity could flow freely. This and its successor, 'After Hours' saw cameo appearances from the likes of such Blues guitar greats as Albert King, BB King, and Albert Collins, and it is a testament to Gary's own remarkable talents that he more than held his own amongst such august company. In 1994, Gary worked alongside Ginger Baker and Jack Bruce in the band BBM, cutting one accomplished album, before resuming his solo career.

The, 'Back To The Blues' (2001) album saw this consummately talented musician revisit The Blues with renewed vigor and determination, after the more experimental 'Dark Days In Paradise' (1997) and 'A Different Beat' (1999) albums. A ten-track collection that mixes excellent Moore originals with gritty and intense covers of standards. But, in the tradition of keeping his fans and critics guessing, 2002 saw Gary Moore crashing back onto the music scene with what has to be his heaviest collection of songs since the late 1980's, once again forcing people to reassess any opinions and preconceptions they may have of him. That time round though, Moore had decided to share the limelight, joining forces with ex-Skunk Anansie bassist Cass Lewis and Primal Scream drummer Darrin Mooney to form 'Scars', a true power trio in every respect. The 'Scars' album was completed in early 2002 and that line-up, then went on to record the 'Live at the Monsters of Rock' (2003) live CD and DVD, which featured the band's set as performed on two separate nights on the UK Tour in May 2003. That live set encompassed a diverse range of material, from across Gary's playing career.

2004, saw possibly the rawest album yet from Gary Moore, 'Power of the Blues'. The 10-track set, recorded mostly live in the studio, ranged from the hard rock/blues of the title track, via the upbeat swing of "Can't find my baby", to the haunting "Torn Inside".

Taking time out in August 2005, for a brief reunion with some of his old Thin Lizzy pals, for a one off concert in Dublin. The evening was filmed for a 2006 DVD release. 'Gary Moore and Friends, One Night in Dublin, A Tribute to Phil Lynott' (Eagle Vision EREDV559). Gary's last studio album 'Old New Ballads Blues' (Eagle Records, EAGCD314) 2006, features featured a blend of stunning originals mixed with some inspiring blues covers.

With his latest studio album 'Close As You Get', Gary continues in a direction not too dissimilar from Old, New, Ballads, Blues. Mixing original tunes with some interesting Blues covers that Gary has rediscovered, whilst researching for his recent Planet Rock 'Blues Power', radio show (UK based digital/internet 'radio' station). Close As You Get showcases Moore's exceptional talent as a guitarist and is destined to be one of the finest blues and guitar albums released in 2007.

2008, sees Gary continue the momentum of all the touring behind the 'Close As You Get', release. Shows were played in various European capitals and a number of festivals throughout 2007 and this is set to continue in 2008.