Rory at the BBC
From the earliest days of Rory's
musical odyssey, the BBC played an important part in his musicianship.
Some of my earliest memories
are of Rory 'surfing' the radio to access blues and jazz programs of the
day, not coming out to play in the morning because of Saturday Club (the
radio 'Old Grey Whistle Test' of it's time) and rushing home from school
for the four o'clock program which devoted thirty minutes of music to a
different group each week.
The young Rory considered
these shows to be an acid test of the performer's musical proficiency,
keenly listening to hear how far a band would deviate from their recordings
and to the real depth of their repertoire.
From the outset the 'In Concert'
disc reminds one of just how Rory excelled when before an audience. Beginning
with the subtle, measured, perfect rendition of "Calling Card" (this has
to be the definitive version), Rory's musical train quickly builds speed
and by "Country Mile" this locomotive generates a head of steam that rockets
right through to the electrifying finale, "Cruise On Out". This session
was recorded at the now defunct 'Venue Club' and produced a particularly
memorable moment. During the final number, due to the intense heat from
the audience coupled with the unstoppable energy on stage plus some over
zealous lighting, Ted McKenna's drum caught fire, giving the crowd an impromptu
I consider my brother was
the finest virtuoso on the electric guitar. Coupled with his song writing
talent (and always in the company of first class musicians), his instrumental
performances and those passionate melodic vocals came honest and true from
the heart of this magnificent man.
Donal Gallagher, London,