Podcast: Rock Guitarist Pat McManus

Listen to a podcast interview with the legendary Fermanagh-born guitarist and former member of Mama's Boys

30 years ago, a group of young brothers from Fermanagh, John, Pat and Tommy McManus, rebelled against their folk music background and decided to rock out. Within a few short years, the band known as Mama’s Boys had the world at their feet.

From 1908 to 1992, the band released eight albums. But, just as quickly things went right, things started to go wrong. Bad business decisions and dubious recording contracts were only the start of their problems.

The death of youngest brother, the drummer, Tommy, in 1994 after a lifelong battle with leukaemia spelt the end for Mama's Boys. The surviving brothers re-invented themselves as Celtus, an experimental folk-rock outfit, and enjoyed some renewed success.

Turn the clock forward to 2013 and Pat McManus is one of the most respected guitarists in modern music. He’s also a musician who just loves to play music – be it in an arena in front of 20,000 screaming fans or at a ceilidh down his local pub.

Pat McManus rarely does interviews. It’s not that he’s not media friendly. Far from it. ‘The Professor’, as he is affectionately known to his legion of international fans, just prefers to let his music do his talking for him.

So, what follows is a very rare, personal insight, as McManus chats about his views on music, the importance of retaining his folk roots, his place in the Irish musical canon alongside Rory Gallagher and Gary Moore, the musical reunion with his brother John and how the Mama’s Boys story has been brought back into the spotlight with a new book by Michael JK Walsh.

Pat McManus returns to play Mason’s Bar in Derry~Londonderry on Saturday, May 4 and the Portrush Playhouse on Friday, May 24. Other dates are to be announced.