Renowned Irish folk hero Christy Moore has heralded the late Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem as his greatest influence, saying he would love to share the stage one more time with the Tipperary born musicians and Makem.
“I first heard the Clancy Brothers singing Trad songs 60 years ago. I went to hear them in 1962 and my whole life changed. As did the lives of many who heard them,” said Moore as part of a video series celebrating the 25th anniversary of the University Concert Hall Limerick.
“If I could stand among the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem and sing a few songs, that would bring me right back to where it started for me when I was 16. Give me the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem and I will be a happy man.”
Christy also revealed that the Limerick venue holds a special place in his heart, after the success of his first series of shows a quarter of a century ago when it opened.
He said: "I remember very well (his first UCH performance) because, obviously, I had no idea what to expect. And then the gig just flew out and we ended up doing nine shows and ever since it has been one of my favourite venues in the country.”
The folk star said that Limerick has a special resonance for him. "Over the years, Limerick has been very, very good to me. I always loved coming into town.
“And of course, Johnny Duhan, gave me one of his biggest songs when he shared 'The Voyage' with me, way back 30 years ago. And it was through recording Johnny's song that I broke through into a different kind of genre almost.”
Looking forward, Christy Moore believes Irish music is in good health.
"I think the state of Irish music and Irish song-writing is stronger now than it has ever been. There is such a diversity now of writers and singers and bands in different genres. I don't think it has ever been as strong and as healthy as it is now.
“I think folk songs, they are not a fashion. The reason they have lasted for centuries is because they are good songs. They transcend the movement of time,” he concluded.
Christy Moore will return to UCH on Friday 26th April 2019. Tickets on sale now.