Despite seeing artists as disparate as Bob Dylan, The Chieftains and the Angelic Upstarts cover his songs, Eric Bogle remains firmly in the “obscure” category to all but observant folkies. He was born today in 1944.
Folk singer/songwriter Eric Bogle born, Peebles, Scotland. Although skirting with the music business with a local band (The Informers), it would take emigration to Australia in 1969 before Eric ultimately returned to performing, albeit on a part-time basis.
With the encouragement of his wife Carmel, 1980 brought about the momentous decision to quit his safe, ‘conventional’ job and become a full-time musician. A 1985 cover by The Pogues of his 1971 composition, “The Band Played Waltzing Matilda” was the first time that Eric’s name had been heard by many, but he would also provide repertoire for the likes of Joan Baez, Mary Black and Billy Bragg.
Touring regularly and releasing fourteen albums, Eric announced that his 2009 live dates would be his last and “The Dreamer” album - and a final live DVD recording followed.
Almost inevitably though, he couldn’t shake the performing bug and he’s continued to appear at small scale live events in both New Zealand and Australia.
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And here’s some footage of Eric in action: