Q Magazine named The Pogues one of the top 50 bands to see before you die in 2001. You will outlive Shane McGowan. So, really, The Pogues are one of the top 50 bands to see before he dies. His teeth were rotting out of his head when he was 20 and are completely gone now. His liver has filtered an ocean of alcohol. I've never seen him without a cigarette in his hand. He sounds like he starts every day by gargling cinder blocks. He's always a half step away from falling over. And he's written some of the best Irish songs, and some of the best songs, ever.
Perhaps the ugliest man in music (he makes Tom Petty look like Matt Damon), McGowan left the band in 1991. But since reuniting with The Pogues in 2001, the group has garnered critical praise for its live sets. They are apparently at the top of their game, and this March, the Irish group will have a chance to prove it with a handful of dates on the East Coast, as well as a two-night stand at the Riviera Theatre in Chicago.
Catch them while you can, because a celebrity death pool list is not complete without McGowan.