Eoin Murphy

Gilbert O’Sullivan, who topped the British and US singles and album charts in the 70’s, chatting with a young Munster Express reporter, Tom Young (was he cool back then or what!), at the De La Salle Centre in Stephen Street. | Photo: Eoin Murphy

Singer-songwriter Gilbert O’Sullivan won’t be ‘getting down’ to play in the city of his birth any time soon.

The 1970s pop sensation has sworn off gigging in Waterford after a disastrous turnout at a concert in the Forum about fifteen years ago.

O’Sullivan, who lived in the city until the age of seven, is currently shooting a special fly-on-the-wall RTE documentary which will explore his phenomenal chart success in the early 1970s and his long but finally successful legal battle with his former manager Gordon Mills during much of the 1980s.

The writer of such chart-topping hits as ‘Alone Again (Naturally)’, ‘Clair’ and ‘Get Down’ plays Cork’s ‘Live at the Marquee’ series in June and sold out six nights in Dublin’s Olympia last year but has sworn off ever putting his native city on his tour list because he still resents playing to the half empty venue back in the mid 1990s. “I was depressed after that,” he said in a later interview.  “I locked myself in my hotel room. I couldn’t understand it; they were obviously trying to tell me something”.

In the same interview O’Sullivan said the Irish only ‘claimed him as their own and were proud of him’ when he became successful in the UK. ” When the success tailed off they were the first not to buy new product, whereas in England, where they weren’t ‘proud’ of me, they would still buy the records”, the interview continued.