The Pogues star Shane MacGowan is bouncing back with new music and art
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The Pogues are best known for two things: their controversial festive hit 'Fairytale of New York' and frontman Shane MacGowan's notorious drink and drug-fuelled lifestyle.
MacGowan was drinking so much that at one point doctors told his sister he only had six months to live if he didn't change his ways.
His wife Victoria May Clarke also recalled an occasion when he answered the door with 'blood pouring out of his mouth because he had eaten a Beach Boys record'.
She told the Irish Independent: "It looked as though it was the 100 tabs of acid that were the problem and not the gin and tonic."
MacGowan now uses a wheelchair, having never truly recovered from falling and breaking his pelvis in 2016 and later breaking his knee.
Nevertheless, his creativity is undeterred and he has recently embarked on a surprising new venture.
In a recent interview, the Irish band’s frontman opened up about his newfound art skills, after having almost sold out all of his work at his gallery exhibition in Knightsbridge, London, The Eternal Buzz and the Crock of Gold.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a MacGowan work if it didn’t include the mention of Guinness, evil teddy bears or the occasional penis scribbling.
He told the Observer: “I am a primitive artist really. I drew them to amuse myself on boring journeys on pieces of paper and sick bags and things.
“I suppose I’m just creative. People have told me I am."
His impressive collection of work is now on show at the Andipa gallery.
However, the publication noted that while his art sells for between £2,000 and £28,000 each, they are in short supply, as the singer mainly worked on the pieces in the 80s.
While hugely ‘blown away by the whole thing’, it's unlikely MacGowan will be rustling up much new artwork any time soon either.
He admitted: “I am always writing songs. It is far more effort to draw.”
Music, however, is something that the performer is still keen to get to grips with once again.
He said: “I am in the later stages now of recording the album with a new band and we have amazing chemistry.”
Of course, The Pogues are soon set to make headlines once again as the controversy surrounding their use of LGBTQ+ slur ‘'f****t' in 'Fairytale of New York' seems to rear its head each festive season.
But MacGowan has previously attempted to shut down the controversy, having argued in favour of the song and performing it live with the slur included in a 2019 episode of The Late Late Show.
Asked about the lyric, MacGowan said: "There is no political correctness to it.
"I've been told it's insulting to gays; I don't understand how that works."
When the host told him why it might offend some people, he added: "Nobody in the band thinks that's worth a second's thought."