Thursday 22 February 2018

Broken-hearted Morrison has always been a real enigma

The Belfast man's friends are almost as famously shy in dishing on the legend as the singer is himself, finds Barry Egan

What becomes a legend most? Let us count the ways. An Irish rock star, internationally famous, who can live a life in our midst of almost Howard Hughes-like mystery. A multimillionaire, married to a Miss Ireland, who most of us know very little about. A man who sings about divine joy but seems rarely to have experienced it personally himself. A man, shrouded in myth, who remains perhaps Ireland's greatest enigma. George Ivan Morrison (born August 31, 1945, in a Protestant neighbourhood of East Belfast) is all these things and more.

In 1976, British music business behemoth Harvey Goldsmith took on the thankless position of managing Morrison. He didn't look back on the job, however brief, with any lasting fondness.

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