Newswire » Culture » Aslan Frontman Christy Dignam Has Passed Away Aged 63

Aslan Frontman Christy Dignam Has Passed Away Aged 63

Aslan Frontman Christy Dignam Has Passed Away Aged 63 – Shane Adlum provides a tribute to the great frontman

The legendary singer has tragically died after a long battle with illness.

The news was announced by his daughter Kiera on her Facebook page on Tuesday. She wrote “On behalf of my family, it is with a broken heart that we convey the news of my father’s passing, Christy Dignam. Dad peacefully left us where he wanted to, at home today 4pm Tuesday, June 13th 2023, after a courageously long-fought battle, surrounded by his family.”

Dignam had been diagnosed with amyloidosis, a rare blood disorder associated with cancer, in 2013. Aslan had been set to play Dublin’s 3 Arena last September but this gig was postponed and then eventually cancelled after concerns arose over the charismatic frontman’s heath. He had been in palliative care since last January and spent the last few months at home in the care of his family.

Born in 1960, Dignam grew up in the north Dublin suburb of Finglas. He had an extremely difficult childhood, something he later suggested may have led to his drug addiction.

In the early eighties he sang with Meelah XVIII before going on to form Aslan in 1982. Aslan quickly developed a reputation and attracted the attention of major record labels. But as the bands reputation grew, so did the tension between Dignam and the rest of the band as his addiction to heroin was becoming a real problem. He left the band and formed Dignam & Goff with guitarist Conor Goff while Aslan carried on with new singer Eamon Doyle before their inevitable split.

Then in 1993, the band reformed to play a “one off” gig in Finglas. But this proved to be a catalyst for greater things. This reunion inspired them to write new music, including their biggest hit, Crazy World. With Christy back at the helm, Aslan were well and truly back and over the next 30 years would prove to be one of Irelands most successful, hard-working bands.

When it came to his addiction and the abuse he suffered as a child, Dignam always spoke openly and honestly. For some people that is how he will be remembered, an open book. He tried many times to kick his addiction and even spent some time with Buddhist monks in Thailand before finally getting clean once and for all in the mid noughties.

President Michael D Higgins was one of many people to take to social media to pay tribute to the late singer. He said “For the last 40 years, Christy and his bandmates in Aslan have made an enormous contribution to the cultural life of our nation. In addition to their well-loved albums and hit singles such as This Is and Crazy World, Aslan will be remembered in particular for their live shows and their remarkable connection with their audience.”

The President also added “Over recent years, all of us have been struck by the dignity with which Christy lived with his illness and admired his dedication in continuing to both perform and record, including his 2021 solo album, despite the challenges which he faced. It is hard to believe that he has left us.”

Christy Dignam may have left this Crazy World but his music and his contribution to Irish culture will be remembered forever.


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