Shane MacGowan is one of the most iconic and transcendent songwriters to emerge from the London punk scene. His work with The Pogues proved that the spirit of punk could be mixed with Irish folk music to produce some of the most poetic and enduring songs of the 1980s. Joe Strummer, who occasionally joined The Pogues on stage, referred to Shane MacGowan as “one of the best writers of the century.”
The Pogues first independently released single was ‘Dark Streets of London’ which was followed by a summer tour supporting The Clash. By the autumn The Pogues had signed to Stiff Records and had released their acclaimed debut album ‘Red Roses For Me’. The next album ’Rum, Sodomy & The Lash’ was produced by Elvis Costello and was an even greater critical and commercial success.
The Pogues achieved their biggest commercial success with the album ‘If I Should I Fall From Grace With God’. This included the No.2 UK single, ‘Fairytale of New York’ which has since topped many polls as the greatest Christmas song of all time.
Shane MacGowan left The Pogues in 1991 and continued to have hits with his new outfit The Popes. He returned to The Pogues for a sell-out tour in 2001 and many subsequent tours over recent years.
Shane MacGowan’s songs are loved around the world and his work is highly respected by both the public and his fellow songwriters. His songs have been featured in many film and TV shows including ‘The Wire’, ‘Tree’s Lounge’, ‘Sid & Nancy’, ‘My Own Private Idaho’ and ‘Straight To Hell’ amongst others.