Book Chapter Details
Mandatory Fields
Laura Watson
2020 Unknown
Made in Ireland: Studies in Popular Music
Don't Believe A Word? Memoirs of Irish Rock Musicians
Routledge
Abingdon
In Press
1
Optional Fields
memoirs; rock; popular music in Ireland; U2; Thin Lizzy; Aslan; Boomtown Rats; Geldof; Lynott; Bono
This chapter discusses the rock memoir as it pertains to Irish music since the 1970s. It builds on the emerging body of scholarship on rock memoirs, which has thus far focused on the autobiographical writings of US and UK musicians. The chapter offers an overview of how Irish recording artists are represented in this literary genre, while noting how this also parallels trends in the global content of rock memoirs. I argue that the subfield of Irish rock memoirs offers some evidence of performers engaging with the country’s storytelling practices, with the result that some of these figures bridge disparate musical and literary traditions. I focus on case studies of four Dublin acts and their lead singers, who emerged in the 1970s and 1980s: U2 and Bono; Thin Lizzy and Phil Lynott; the Boomtown Rats and Bob Geldof; Aslan and Christy Dignam. While these acts all originated in the capital, they each possess distinctive Irish artistic identities, which are reproduced in various ways via the literary medium of the memoir. I analyse the memoirs in relation to aspects of their musical outputs, noting how these narratives serve to reinforce the self-images of the artists and work to (re)construct how the public understands and historicises them.
Lónán Ó Briain, John O'Flynn, Áine Mangaoang
Grant Details