Published: Tue, April 17, 2018
Arts&Culture | By Antoinette Montgomery

Sadness at passing of country legend Big Tom

Sadness at passing of country legend Big Tom

Irish country music legend Big Tom has passed away aged 81.

'Dad passed away peacefully in the company of his family. He will be sadly missed by all who new him.

'May he rest in peace'.

Tributes have already begun to pour in for the man Big Tom, whose career in country music spanned five decades.

Tom McBride was the first person to be inducted into Irelands Country Music Hall Of Fame in 2016.

He was one of several artists who took part in a charity concert in Letterkenny past year following the August floods that devastated parts of Donegal.

The Irish prime minister, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, was amongst those with warm words for the "Mainliners" frontman.

She said: "From Four Country Roads to Gentle Mother, his hits have travelled far and wide, earning him the title of the King of Country Music".

"There's people who have a presence and big Tom had it in abundance when he walked in somewhere". We all referred to him as The King.

"Big Tom is a household name, not only in Ireland, but in many parts of the UK. He was the first to break into the main stream music business and appeared on many United Kingdom music shows before any other Irish country music stars".

He continued: "It is just so sad". His family, I'm sure they are just devastated at his passing.

Tom's peer and contemporary on the Irish show band scene, Dickie Rock, said: "He was loved because, one thing he was a talented man and he sang the kind of music people wanted to hear, but what is also nice and very important was that he was a very nice man".

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