Gary Moore

Gary Moore biography

Robert William Gary Moore (4 April 1952 - 6 February 2011), was a Northern Irish musician, most widely recognised as a singer and virtuoso guitarist.

In a career dating back to the 1960s, Moore played with musicians including Phil Lynott and Brian Downey during his teens, leading him to memberships with the Irish bands Skid Row and Thin Lizzy. Moore shared the stage with such blues and rock musicians as B.B. King, Albert King, Albert Collins, George Harrison, and Greg Lake, as well as having a successful solo career. He guested on a number of albums recorded by high-profile musicians.

Moore grew up on Castleview Road opposite Stormont Parliament Buildings, off the Upper Newtownards Road in east Belfast, as one of five children of a promoter named Bobby and housewife, Winnie. He left the city as a teenager, because of troubles in his family - his parents parted a year later - just as The Troubles were starting in Northern Ireland.

Moore started performing at a young age, having picked up a battered acoustic guitar at the age of eight. He got his first quality guitar at the age of 14, learning to play the right-handed instrument in the standard way despite being left-handed.

Aiming to become a musician, he moved to Dublin at the age of 16. Moore's greatest influence in the early days was guitarist Peter Green of Fleetwood Mac who was a mentor to Moore when performing in Dublin. Green's continued influence on Moore was later repaid as a tribute to Green on his 1995 album Blues for Greeny, an album consisting entirely of Green compositions. On this tribute album, Moore played Green's 1959 Les Paul Standard guitar which Green had lent to Moore after leaving Fleetwood Mac. Moore ultimately purchased the guitar, at Green's request, so that "it would have a good home". Other early musical influences were artists such as Albert King, Elvis Presley, The Shadows and The Beatles. Later, having seen Jimi Hendrix and John Mayall's Bluesbreakers in his home town of Belfast, his own style was developing into a blues-rock sound that would be the dominant form of his career in music.

In Dublin, Moore joined the group Skid Row with Noel Bridgeman and Brendan "Brush" Shiels. It was with this group that he earned a reputation in the music industry, and his association with Phil Lynott began.

In 1970, Moore moved to England and remained there, apart from two short periods in the United States. In 1973, under the moniker "The Gary Moore Band" he released his first solo album in 1973, Grinding Stone . "Grinding Stone" was issued in North America on Neil Kempfer-Stocker's fledgling record label imprint Cosmos and received "Album of the Year" accolades on KTAC-FM/Seattle-Tacoma, Washington in 1974.

In 1974 he re-joined Lynott, when he first joined Thin Lizzy after the departure of founding member Eric Bell.

From 1975 to August 1978, he was a member of Colosseum II. With the band he also collaborated with Andrew Lloyd Webber on the composer's Variations album in 1978.

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