Nick Cave Shares Eulogy for the Pogues’ Shane MacGowan

    Nick Cave has written a eulogy for the Pogues’ Shane MacGowan, who died last month at the age of 65. Cave previously paid tribute to his longtime friend in an installment of The Red Hand Files, and performed a cover of the Pogues’ 1986 ballad ‘A Rainy Night in Soho’ at the musician’s funeral a couple of weeks ago.

    “I first met Shane in 1989 when the music paper NME thought it would be a good idea to bring us two together alongside Mark E Smith from the Fall for a so-called ‘summit meeting,’” Cave wrote in The Guardian. “I was excited because I was a fan, completely in awe of Shane’s songwriting.”

    “Unfortunately, it was my first day out of rehab, and it probably wasn’t the greatest idea to spend the day with two people who were not known for their moderation,” he continued. “It was pure mayhem from the outset. Not the most auspicious start to a friendship, but Shane and I did become close friends soon afterwards.”

    “At the end of the day, though, it is his genius we should remember rather than all the other stuff,” Cave added. “He wrote a bunch of songs that are truly great. That’s a hell of a lot more than most songwriters manage. His best lyrics have a truly lived-in nature to them. His beautiful soul is baked in to every word, every phrase of A Rainy Night in Soho or The Old Main Drag. They are rooted in earned experience. Those profoundly beautiful words coming out of such a broken soul. He had something that we lesser writers have to work hard to even get close to. An effortless, God-given talent.”

    Konstantinos Pappis
    Konstantinos Pappis
    Konstantinos Pappis is a writer, journalist, and music editor at Our Culture. His work has also appeared in Pitchfork, GIGsoup, and other publications. He currently lives in Athens, Greece.

    Arts in one place.

    All of our content is free, if you would like to subscribe to our newsletter or even make a small donation, click the button below.

    People are Reading