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Gary Moore RIP ~ My Memories

Gary Moore has tragically died aged only 58
He was a huge musical influence on my guitar playing and its terribly sad. In preparing a picture for this post I was reminded I’d spent a lifetime with Gary Moore

A Lifetime with Gary Moore

Gary Moore Guitarist

A Lifetime with Gary Moore

I never knew or met Gary Moore of course but he’s been ‘in my life’ if you will for over 3 decades, responsible for many hours of tortured practice.
He was, quite simply, a fantastic guitar player !
You’ll note I’ll be paying the man the respect he deserves and referring to him by name only and not prefixing it with ‘Former Thin Lizzy Guitarist’ - he was incredible in his own right.

I remember seeing him way back on a TV show called Rock School. He was demonstrating his pedal board and I sat in awe as a young kid watching and listening to the huge sound only he seemed capable of creating.
It was a time before video, MTV and YouTube etc and you never got to see these people, with YouTube and the like nowadays it’s difficult for those who know nothing else to understand the impact such a thing had back then.

In the picture you’ll see vinyl LPs :shock: such as Skid Row, Grinding Stone, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s variation of Paganini’s 24 Caprices (theme tune for the South Bank Show), Dirty Fingers and Back on the Streets, then the harder rock stuff of Corridors of Power, Back to the Future and We Want Moore a live album.
Subsequent modern blues CDs which saw him very successfully change musical track and an example of some of his guitar tab which I’ve spent hours learning.

Last night I watched the Montreux Sessions on DVD and once again marvelled at how he wrung every ounce of tone, feeling and warmth out of that Les Paul.
Interestingly, whilst I was watching him play that classic Gibson a Peter Green documentary was on BBC4 - you’ll know the connection and what a coincidence that was !

His passing serves to remind us that we’re all getting older and things that seem recent could in fact have been decades ago now.
I genuinely feel sad at the loss of Gary Moore as he played such a big part in my early life it’s a real shame. The only consolation is that he leaves a tremendous legacy that will never die - the spirit of Gary Moore will live on not only in his music but in the music created by other guitarists so inspired by the great man himself.

Nobody ever made a Les Paul sing like that

Sadly yours

If you have memories, thoughts or opinions on the absolute real deal Guitar Hero Gary Moore then please do feel free to leave a comment


  1. Little Brother said,

    February 7, 2011 @ 1:49 pm

    A fitting tribute. I saw him play about a year ago and it was quite simply a complete musical performance, the place was packed and he played as though the guitar was an actual part of his body, he was so natural.
    Last year he hosted a blues programme on the digital radio station; Planet Rock and he would talk about blues artists and demonstrate their own unique style on his guitar. I cannot ever remember sitting down and listening to the radio and doing nothing else for an hour every Sunday night.
    There are many songs and guitar parts of his that I associate with times in my life and I remember some of his solos as if they were lyrics. On Planet Rock this morning a caller said that Gary would often play for free in his local Brighton pub when he was inbetween tours and recording and jam with the locals for a bit of fun. I also know that he was of great financial help to a number of veteran blues artists in recent years who had fallen on hard times but helped by Moore with guest appearences, touring and re-recording their songs.

    Like Ronnie James Dio last year, a gentleman and a real loss.


  2. Jordan said,

    February 7, 2011 @ 3:10 pm


    It is indeed sad to hear yet another musical great has died, I like yourself, was truly shocked when I heard the news.

    His music will never die and to me the Gibson Les Paul will always be synonymous to Gary.

    Still got The Blues

  3. Rod said,

    February 7, 2011 @ 3:48 pm

    it always felt like he was a likeable and accessable man somehow - in many ways his playing reflected that sense as well.
    What he played always seemed ‘touchable’ you could get there and do it - albeit without the tone and unique vibrato.
    I wonder whether we’ll see pure musical talent and passion again in future generations ?

  4. Rod said,

    February 7, 2011 @ 3:53 pm

    it was a shock when I got the text from my brother, doubly so I think because he was never really associated with the hedonistic lifestyle that so many of his comtempories are/were - I suppose I imagined him one day old and grey but still jamming with blues guitarists.

    I’ve never heard anybody get such a sound out of a Les Paul as he did, I remember writing about his guitars, including the Peter Green one here


  5. Rockfan said,

    February 7, 2011 @ 9:38 pm

    Saw him play loads of times and met him when he came to the Central Hall with an all star line up. Interestingly I remember chatting with his tour manager. She was a small fat aggressive little woman called Sharon. She went on to marry Ozzy and the rest is history.

    Great guitarist, he left behind a body of work that will be enjoyed by many for decades to come.

  6. Rod said,

    February 8, 2011 @ 8:17 am

    thanks for the comment and welcome to the site, ge’s a tremendous loss and we’ll not see the like of hin again

  7. Chris Taus said,

    February 8, 2011 @ 8:41 am

    R.I.P. Former Thin Lizzy Guitarist Gary Moore

  8. Kate said,

    February 8, 2011 @ 1:46 pm

    We heard about Gary Moore’s death on the Sunday 7p.m. R4 news and it came as a terrible shock, especially as you say, he wasn’t really known for hard-living in the mould of some of his contemporaries. OH is a huge fan and it’s hit him very hard: 58 isn’t that old and we’d hoped that we’d be listening to new albums for a few years yet .

    Gary Moore was to the Les Paul what Jeff Beck is to the Strat - both at the top table in my hall of guitar heroes; he was a truly talented and versatile player who loved what he did and was capable of turning his hand to many styles, although his real virtuousity laid with the blues - he took Greeny’s crown and ran with it, fulfilling the promise that his early mentor never realised and he played as though the guitar was part of him; he’ll be sadly missed as they don’t seem to make ‘em like him any more.

    I’m about the same age as you Rod, I can also remember watching him on Rock School (the original, not that recent thing with Gene Simmonds!!) - gosh that brings back some memories; round when Parisienne Walkways came out (the song that everyone remembers, it’s been played to death and I rarely if ever put it on now, but it’s still a classic) I recall seeing him on the music progs on the telly a lot when it came out, usually BBC2 in those days, but that song made TOTP, got a lot of airplay on every music radio station (there weren’t many then, were there?!) and reached No8 in the UK singles charts - a huge success at that time & hard to believe now as you say… (the daughters call it “when Mum lived in the olden days”!) He was never out of the music press of the time either, well, Sounds anyway - NME was mostly too obsessed with punk & New Wave.

    He’s still responsible for many tortured hours of practice by OH in this household too, when he takes the notion (currently also on a tobacco sunburst Les Paul as I think the GM signature got sold on, unless it’s in hiding as too precious to play) and OH has him on all his MP3 playlists - the music’s now streamed, but we still have the vinyl (and the means to play it). OH saw him with Thin Lizzy on several occasions in his (and Moore’s) native Belfast and we last saw him solo at Hammersmith not long before we moved up here: regardless of whether you liked everything he did, you couldn’t deny the man’s talent.

    We’ll remember you with thanks Mr Moore for all the listening pleasure you gave & still give us


  9. Rod said,

    February 8, 2011 @ 7:00 pm

    a great read with many echoes for me personally as well.
    It is very sad but at least he has left a legacy - how many of us will be remembered thus - very few indeed which only goes to show even more what a special person he was.

  10. Jordan said,

    February 9, 2011 @ 9:08 am


    I don’t know how true the news is! But it is saying he died of a heart attack, very sad.

    Thoughts go out to his children and partner.


  11. Rod said,

    February 9, 2011 @ 9:16 am

    thanks for the update, I’d not heard that. If true then there’s a couple of national newspapers that deserve to be sued and hammered for disrespectful reporting.
    Did you know he married a lincolnshire girl some years ago and the weeding was held here in Lincolnshire.
    An old friend of mine actually went to the church to wish them well on the day

  12. Jordan said,

    February 9, 2011 @ 11:30 am


    Yes the tabloids are indeed wrong.

    I did know off his 1st wedding, to the (at the time) Grimsby football teams managers daughter. The managers name was Dave Booth. They got wed at North Thoresby Parish Church (Phil Lynott did attend). Their marriage lasted 8 years and they had 2 sons together. At the time of his death, he was with his long term partner Jo, and they had a daughter together.

    Reporting the facts

    Jordan :)

  13. Rod said,

    February 9, 2011 @ 4:34 pm

    that’s brought it back now - well played Sir (ette)
    I can even remember talking about it to friends one Staurday afternoon - I must have been a boy back then !

  14. phil said,

    February 12, 2011 @ 6:12 pm

    I was a spotty teenager and waited outside the church at North Thorseby, we met Gary Moore and the band and Phil Lynott who turned up late. Good memories eh

  15. Rod said,

    February 12, 2011 @ 6:34 pm

    great stuff, good memories indeed and thanks for sharing them.
    Phil Lynott who turned up late. He’d have to have done really wouldn’t.
    All the best

  16. Michael said,

    February 19, 2011 @ 1:37 am

    Awesome comments guys
    I too was truly gutted when I heard
    An eerie, almost surreal thing happened to me
    I have several Gibson Les Pauls and Marshall amps and had been contemplating for several days on buying Gibson’s new BFG Gary Moore current Les Pauls and was in a guitar shop in Melbourne Australia looking at one-
    Probably not one of the nicest Les Pauls but the pickup combination and sound are truly amazing, when the salesman mentioned Gary Moore’s death-as it was just announced over the radio-
    I was gutted!!!!
    With no reservation I put a deposit on the only one they had left and walking out of the store, could not stop thinking about Gary-
    Instead of being ecstatic and thrilled at the purchase of yet another Gibson, I felt totally depressed and sick at the thought that I, and the rest of the world will never hear another new Gary Moore album or see a show-
    How tragic that is, as the guy has had such a profound impact on my life and given me enormous pleasure over the past 30 years or so
    You will be sadly missed Gary-your music will live on forever in all our hearts
    There was no other like you and probably never will be
    My thoughts and wishes go out to your family
    RIP Gary, you are truly amazing
    Thank you for the years of absolute pleasure
    Michael from OZ!!!!!

  17. Rod said,

    February 19, 2011 @ 9:09 am

    thanks for the comment and welcome to the site.
    I think a lot of people shared your feelings and wanted a Gray Moore Les Paul as the article I wrote about it some time ago has had many 100s of visitors in the last month.
    Best wishes

  18. Jordan said,

    March 17, 2011 @ 12:11 pm


    With your lust for churchs i would have thought that you would have hot-booted it to North Thoresby Parish Church to do a blog on it.


  19. Rod said,

    March 17, 2011 @ 2:45 pm

    I’ve actually already been to the church and it’s in a draft post waiting to be written up !
    Didn’t think to tie the 2 in :(

  20. Jordan said,

    March 17, 2011 @ 4:28 pm


    Oh dear! :roll:

    To redeem yourself, try and find a wedding shot of Gary there on the day. How good would that be? Then i would be impressed! :P


  21. Rod said,

    March 17, 2011 @ 6:46 pm

    I’ll see if I can impress you - though it sounds like a tough gig :)
    I have seen a picture and it’s annoying me trying to remember where

  22. Mark said,

    June 13, 2012 @ 6:01 am

    I am a big fan of Gary Moore’s music and Still Got The Blues was and still is my all time inspiration in life.
    I saw him in nottingham and it was on my birthday. He asked where the birthday boy was and I put my hand up then he called me on stage and me and gary played still got the blues together. It was so good he also played happy birthday for me. Then I was shocked when he said he was leaving the stage to tand in the crowd next to my mum and my dad. He said to me because it was my birthday I could jam with his band for half an hour so I did.
    It was a great honnor and I will miss him RIP my guitar hero.

  23. Rod said,

    June 13, 2012 @ 6:06 am

    thanks for the coment, what a wonderful honour and a great night
    All the best

  24. Dr.Doolittle said,

    February 2, 2014 @ 8:17 am

    Hi Rod,

    Lovely site full of interesting mayhem (just discovered), via the Harry Pothead biz.The Horncastle guitar shop article was blooming fab but I missed it when we went there two year back to check out where we ought to live. Me & the old Lady are now retired and live in cor blimey guv Essex innit. I’m much more sophisco though as I come from way out west originally (Bristol). Well,we may move to Suffolk - but we really dug Horny & Lough but the kids want us nearer to them (we do love Suffy too).

    Your blurb on Gary was of course done some time ago & I’m a bit late in catching up - I love Guitars got a few modern Lesters/SG & a Fender Strat USA Standard. Tone is what I try to focus on - and of course the period ‘66 to about ‘71 is where I tend to find the grist. So any geezer around that phase do still give one the buzz. Being a poor musician I have tons of work to do (on the odd occasion there is something there) but I could never copy the boys from that period. !

    I would prefer to take it to the next stage but that ain’t happened plus I need to become some sort of musician. Perhaps the Suffolk / Norfolk / Linconshire air will prime me when we get our rears up there eventually.
    Saw Gary when he filled in for Eric (Thin Lizzy) back when the old boy had to quit. There was a lot of menace coming from the young ‘un. You may have seen the OGWT Yutube clip of the boys doing ‘Don’t believe a word’ around about 1978 - Gary as reverb on max and a busted high E + downed a few Benedictines. If I can’t get near that then I’ll stick to some John Cage experimentation.

    Best wishes, Ed

  25. Rod said,

    February 2, 2014 @ 8:19 am

    thanks for the comment and welcome to the site, pleased you’ve found a few bits of interest
    Kind regards,

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