- May 5, 2020
Sure MacGowan was born in the UK but within weeks of birth he was brought back to Tipperary where he spent the next six years.Both his parents were Irish. If you grow up in another place with a strong Irish home identity, it is virtually impossible to fully identify with the host society.
I don't question his entitlement to identify as Irish, I think it is genuine, my only beef with him is the paddy-whackery. He knows better but he cleverly identified a market for this kind of persona, just as Behan did before him, and who has clearly played a big influence on McGowan's construction of his own public persona. To be fair though, he is obviously cut out for it by tempermanent.
Culturally going right back, the English have a certain distorted picture of Paddy which he plays to, and this is what I find distasteful.
Was he going to give them some Big Lizzy ? ?What about the famous black man who asked once where there any girls out there who'd like a bit more Irish in them?
Some posters on this thread may have even had a pic of him on the bedroom wall growing up.
The Paddy-whackery is his behaviour and public persona, not his music. In fact, I have made no comment at all on his music.Sure MacGowan was born in the UK but within weeks of birth he was brought back to Tipperary where he spent the next six years.
The family was big into ceilli's with his mother being a keen ceilidh dancer and it was being regularly brought along to those events during these years that gave him his gra for traditional music which stayed with him all his life. His love of Irish culture is most definitely genuine and is not paddy-whackery as you seem to think.
I dont see any Paddy-whackery about his public persona as that would insinuate his persona is being put on.The Paddy-whackery is his behaviour and public persona, not his music. In fact, I have made no comment at all on his music.
I think aspects of it are put on, or perhaps exaggerated would be better. He seemed almost seemed dedicated to fulfilling a certain stereotype. Behan did it as well. There is a basis for it in their personalities, I'm not saying they are frauds. Many an Irishman has played the Paddy for an English audience. If you can't see how the persona of a McGowan or a Behan conforms to some extent to the figure of the stage Irishman, I can't really explain it anymore than I have.I dont see any Paddy-whackery about his public persona as that would insinuate his persona is being put on.