Swear I'm not Paul: RIP: Ronnie Drew, Leroi Moore

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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

RIP: Ronnie Drew, Leroi Moore

I was never the biggest fan of the Dubliners. It was more the kind of music my Dad listened to. But I respected Ronnie Drew as a man. I had seen him on the Late Late Show a good few times - it was staple viewing in my house, and perhaps the only thing I was allowed to watch post 9.00. I would convince my parents to let me watch the news on school nights, not because I wanted to see it, but just so I could stay up. Now I think I was better off in bed.

Ronnie Drew was an inspiration to many, he probably directly caused the careers of other musicians. Damien Dempsey is one such musician who acknowledges this. But from all those scant fleeting appearances of Drew from my childhood, I knew the music. I even felt like I knew the man. And he will be sadly missed by all.

Ronnie Drew 1934-2008

I woke up this morning to read that the saxophonist in the Dave Matthews Band - the band of my adolescence, and the adolescence of millions of Americans (not so many Irish) - has died following his admittance to hospital due to a quadbike (ATV) crash.

Moore was 46 and one of the founding and ever-present members of DMB. This is the band I embraced as a teenager, when everyone else here was all about Linkin Park and Eminem. They were the band I moved on to from Counting Crows. They were the band, that essentially, shaped my musical existence. And now, it feels like I've lost a little bit of that.

I never met the man himself, but I did see him twice on stage - once in New York and once in Dublin - and no-one who has seen Dave Matthews Band live can argue that he wasn't one of the best saxophonists of recent years. He gave DMB an extra dimension - the brass sound about them maybe made them unique for me. Dave Matthews Band were my band. Leroi was my saxophonist. And now he's gone.

LeRoi Moore - 1961-2008

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