I wrote this concert review after seeing Gary Moore live for the first time, and meeting him at a press conference in 2008. It was published in the most important music magazine in Romania – Sunete. My deepest regret is that in 2010, while Gary was in Presov for a concert, I wasn’t able to give him a translated copy of this review. My only consolation is the fact that he knew for sure how much he was loved by his fans.
Gary Moore Concert Review
14th of June 2008, Alsoors, Hungary
Gary Moore is an Irish blues-rock guitarist, with a career of over 40 years, continuing to amaze and surprise me, musically, by everything he does. No matter which period of his career we look at, anytime, anywhere, and with whomever he played and collaborated with, Gary did it with a lot of intuition, professionally. He was part of the legendary rock band Thin Lizzy, he played jazz-rock in Colosseum II, but Gary Moore became notorious for his solo career, as an independent artist. In the 70’-80’, his rock period, Gary Moore wrote forceful songs such as: „Out in the Fields”, „Over the Hills and Far Away”, „Back on the Streets”, „Hiroshima”, and also songs full of feelings „Empty Rooms”, „Parisienne Walkways”, „The Loner”, etc. Since the 90’s, he turned from rock to the blues-rock, thus stepping into a new category. The Irishman detached from the many guitarists of his generation by his unique way of playing the guitar, overflowing with imagination. He is a true guitar virtuoso, full of energy, of an unrivaled melodic sense and expressiveness. His guitar knows how to cry, how to laugh, how to be aggressive, how to liftour spirit. This man plays with all his soul; his solos are extremely nuanced, full of feeling. At the end of a Gary Moore solo you think that the guitar he played with is no good anymore, as even its last notes were squeezed out of it. Gary Moore is one with the guitar; the guitar is his devoted lifetime companion, the extension of his hands. He is a real perfectionist! In 2004 I was ready to see him live, at Bucharest, but unfortunately the concert was canceled. I don’t think you want to know how many beers I drank into sadness, that day. This year, though, I found out that Gary will have a concert in Hungary and I started to prepare myself. The 14th of June 2008 will be a day I will never forget! I got as close I could get to my idol, being present at the press conference held before the concert. He signed my guitar, we shook hands, I gave him a good Romanian wine, and we took some pictures together. It was phenomenal! I was deeply marked by his extremely expressive eyes. A man sure of himself, so human. He told us that he wants to come to Romania, maybe also because he is curious to know the country where his wife worked as voluntary on an ambulance, for three years. No doubt that later, I was present at the sound-check. Gary and his band played 5 songs, entirely. 46 fantastic minutes! I was very happy to see Brian Downey on drums, ex-member in Thin Lizzy. It was like a present. I instantly started to applaud. When I heard the Gibsons live, I got goose bumps. Gary played a new song “I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know”, which will probably be on his next album. My eyes filled with tears. The guitar was crying, the soul was crying, the whole being was crying. Happiness! It’s hard for me to tell you how I felt in the evening, when the concert began. I kept telling myself: “I’m here, Gary, I see you, I hear you, I feel you!” I was in the front row, I watched his every move. It was absolutely incredible! Listening to Gary Moore’s music, live, gives you such feelings, which can’t be put into words. When you see how much passion he puts into his music, when you see him transfigured, lighting up the public, you realize that these are the moments worth living for! A real man, playing real music for real people! It was a blessing to hear the songs of my teenage years, the songs I wished so much to hear live. One hour and 40 minutes of blues! During the concert, Gary came really close to us, even though it was raining. Standing there, three meters away from us, he caressed our souls, transporting us into a different dimension, in a world where he is as home and we were his guests. One time he raised a glass of white whine on our behalf, saying: “Cheers!” We were extatic! Then he started to play again. We could tell he was feeling good, and the public rewarded him generously. Being for the first time in Hungary, he was awaited for many years by his fans. I was waiting for him for 16 years! Gary played a few powerful songs from the album that is to come out, but he also played a superb Al Kooper composition, “I Love You More Than You’ll Ever Know”, a slow blues, with a 4 minutes solo. Besides the renowned Gibson Les Paul guitars (4 of them), Gary amazed us with two Fender Telecasters, in two separate songs, with explosive country-rock and rockabilly solos. He proved his skills also on a Gibson Les Paul BFG, in a new song, with slide. “Hard Times” was exceptional! Force, vigor. In “Have You Heard” he played on a Gibson ES-335, a very versatile guitar. We were as hypnotized. His guitar sounded with full gain, then, without pushing any pedal, the guitar sounded clean, only by using the tone and volume controls, and of course using those 10 Master fingers! Thousands of people sang with him “Walking By Myself”. He got of the stage and people started to shout: “We want Moore! We want Moore!” Moore returned, he played two encores, taking the pulse of the public, then concluding. “The Blues Is Alright”. And “Parisienne Walkways”… “Thank you very much. Thank you for coming. God bless you. Sorry about the weather. Good night.” – he told us and left us waiting for Moore.