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Frontman Shane MacGowan of the Pogues dies at age 65

Close up of orange wax candle flame on a dark background "in memoriam'
Close up of orange wax candle flame on a dark background "in memoriam'

Former Pogues frontman Shane MacGowan has died at the age of 65. MacGowan’s cause of death has not been revealed.

MacGowan’s wife, journalist Victoria Mary Clarke, announced her husband’s death on social media: “I don’t know how to say this so I am just going to say it. Shane who will always be the light that I hold before me and the measure of my dreams and the love ❤ of my life and the most beautiful soul and beautiful angel and the sun and the moon and the start and end of everything that I hold dear has gone to be with Jesus and Mary and his beautiful mother Therese. I am blessed beyond words to have met him and to have loved him and to have been so endlessly and unconditionally loved by him and to have had so many years of life and love ❤ and joy and fun and laughter and so many adventures. There’s no way to describe the loss that I am feeling and the longing for just one more of his smiles that lit up my world. Thank you thank you thank you thank you for your presence in this world you made it so very bright and you gave so much joy to so many people with your heart and soul and your music. You will live in my heart forever. Rave on in the garden all wet with rain that you loved so much ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤ You meant the world to me.”

The Pogues confirmed MacGowan’s death in a statement on behalf of Clarke, MacGowan’s sister Siobhan, and his father Maurice: “It is with the deepest sorrow and heaviest of hearts that we announce the passing of SHANE MACGOWAN. Shane died peacefully at 3am this morning (30 November, 2023) with his wife Victoria and family by his side. Prayers and the last rites were read which gave comfort to his family.”

MacGowan, an Irish singer-songwriter born in Kent, England, came to fame in the 1970s London punk scene and helped form the Pogues in 1982. The band found success with the band in the 1980s and early 1990s, releasing such singles as “Fairytale of New York.” However in 1991, MacGowan was fired from the group amid personal issues. He later formed Shane MacGowan & the Popes, which recorded and toured in the 1990s. MacGowan later returned for the Pogues’ reunion in 2001, and continued with them until 2014 before they again parted ways.

Editorial credit: NetPix /

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