The most important thing to remember about drunks is that drunks are far more intelligent than non-drunks- they spend a lot of time talking in pubs, unlike workaholics who concentrate on their careers and ambitions, who never develop their higher spiritual values, who never explore the insides of their head like a drunk does.— Shane MacGowan
The most courageous Shane MacGowan quotes that are glad to read
I'm just following the Irish tradition of songwriting, the Irish way of life, the human way of life. Cram as much pleasure into life, and rail against the pain you have to suffer as a result. Or scream and rant with the pain, and wait for it to be taken away with beautiful pleasure . . .
I drink because I'm thirsty.
I've been a babe magnet for quite a while now.
The only politician anybody ever believed was Kennedy, anyway.
Kennedy, Martin Luther King - civil rights always turns out in bloody war. Where's his dream now? When is a change going to come - as Sam Cooke said - for blacks in America? Anyone who does tell the truth gets a bullet in the head, y'know what I mean?
I'm not so much a rock star, d'ya know what I mean? I play Irish music.
There's really no age when you stop playing Irish music. Even if I retired from playing onstage, I'd still be singing in pubs.
There have been many happy days and many unhappy ones in my life, but the most important was the day I met my missus, who is sometimes estranged and sometimes not. She got me off smack - although that's not the main reason it's the happiest moment.
Irish music is guts, balls and feet music, yeah? It's frenetic dance music, yeah? Or it's impossibly sad like slow music, yeah? Yeah? And it also handles all sorts of subjects, from rebel songs to comical songs about sex, you know what I mean, yeah? Which I don't think people realize how much innuendo there is in Irish music.
I don't believe in the Holy Trinity - but I do believe in the Holy Ghost.
The Holy Spook is just a friendly way of saying Holy Ghost.
Wrestling used to be interesting. There was a bit of sham involved, of course, but there was some real wrestling involved. They're just characters now. It's unrecognizable. There's no fighting in American bloody wrestling. They just yell at each other and jump around like overweight ballet dancers.
I play Irish popular music, yeah? Calling it folk is like putting it in a box.
It's a living tradition, you know?
There's an art to playing live. It's a great feeling. It's indescribable. It's what I love. I wouldn't do it if I didn't enjoy it.
I'm not going to waste my time trying 'break' America, you know what I mean? Too many people have died trying to break America. America doesn't break unless it wants to.
Petitions are ridiculous.
You can’t hate people unless you love them.
What I do is I'm a bandleader, frontman, entertainer.
All I can do is go by the words of Christ, who was the only talker we had, for f - 's sake. Buddha didn't speak. The Holy Ghost didn't speak. But I think it all boils down to the same thing - it's all about unity, love, compassion.
With The Pogues, at least the first three albums I'll stand by completely, yeah? Because I was in artistic control then, yeah? And the last couple of albums I'll stand by anything that's got my name on it, yeah? But I'll stand by anything that is on The Popes' albums, you know? I wouldn't put stuff out that I didn't like. I don't put out bad music. And I can tell the difference. I know that.
My dad has no control over who works with me.
Me, me and me alone has to take responsibility for anything.
I hate the bloody highways. I hate hamburgers, I hate Greyhound buses. I'd have liked to have been in America during the Jazz Age, or the Golden Age of Hollywood.
There is drinking in lots of the songs because there is drinking in life.
Drinking stimulates the imagination.
Cram as much pleasure as you can into life, and rail against the pain that you have to suffer as a result.
Everyone drinks..........Well, unless they don't.
When I'm writing a song, it gives me more actual pleasure to hear someone else sing it than do it meself.
My mother was a champion Irish dancer and singer and most of my family were musical, particularly in Irish dancing. Music is all about spewing out your emotions. A mixture of a good tune and a good beat and everyone playing their guts out and something that grabs people's attention.