Memories of Big Tom

'Big Tom' McBride seen here with Ryan Tubridy during one of his appearances on The Late Late Show. (Picture: Andres Poveda Photography)

It’s been 5 years since we lost our King of Country, Big Tom McBride, but his memory lives on in his music and events such as the upcoming Big Tom Weekend in his native Oram, Castleblaney.

This year’s festival takes place on September 16th and 17th and it celebrates his birthday also as Tom as born on September 18th 1936.

Tom rose to fame in the late 1960s and he created the same fan mania among country and showband fans as the Beatles did on the pop scene! In 1969, after achieving fame with his signature hit ‘Gentle Mother’.

Police on horseback had to be called in to control the crowd that swarmed around the Gresham Ballroom in London’s Holloway Road where he was appearing with his band ‘The Mainliners’.

In the 70s, 80s and 90s when Tom was in full health, fans called to his home every Sunday to be photographed with the big man himself.

– Angela Osborne