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Based In Sligo, Ireland / email: showbands@gmsproductions.com

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Country and Western Band Photos (A through B) - 179 photos

Click on letters for sorted photos   A-B  C  D-H   I-L   M-P    Q-Z   Big Tom

On this page, we pay tribute to the hundreds of country bands that entertained Irish audiences back in the "good old days." After the steam ran out of the showband engine, bands generally disbanded or regrouped as either "pop" or "country." In the beginning, the bands played the same circuit as the ballrooms were large enough to accommodate alternating pop and country nights outfits without affecting attendance. However, as the ballroom crowds shrunk and more hotels got into the dance business, the gigs got more specialized, further increasing competition among the bands.

"Country music" nights became a regular feature of hotels and clubs around the country. Country acts also found it easier to move into the cabaret scene. While discos appealed to the young crowds, in the end, it was the country segment of the industry that survived the longest. Most likely, this was because of the broader appeal of country music to an aging audience.

One of the most unusual aspects of the Irish country scene was the "invention" of a new musical style particular to Ireland, dubbed "Country and Irish." With the success of artists like Big Tom, Margo, Larry Cunningham, Philomena Begley, and others, this new style of bastardized country music took the dancing public by storm, while also creating a divide between those that enjoyed the new music and those that preferred their country music on the "western" side. As American country music (on which the Irish model had been based) continued to morph through the seventies and eighties, the Irish version remain relatively unchanged, causing some critics to further deride the music as unoriginal and without merit.          

If anyone takes exception to having these photos exhibited on our website, please let us know and we'll remove them immediately. Thanks. By the way, if you know where any of these bands are today, please click here. 

Acknowledgements: Our special thanks to Shaun Magee, Dick Lynott, David Dwane, Anthony Grace, Francis Kennedy, Teddie Palmer, Jan Lynch, Kathleen Smith, Declan Colgan, Peter Kinsey, Joe Dodd, Brian "Shorty" O'Kane, Andy Monk, and Alan Carr for additional photos. All photos are identified with contributor's initials (see full details at bottom of page).

Click on a thumbnail photo to see a full size image and additional information.

Philomena Begley Ronnie Griffiths & American Pie - 1973 Brendan Quinn and the Bluebirds Big Chief (Simon Scott) of the Apaches Big Chief & "Squaw" of the Apaches (DD)
Big Valley All Stars - 1973 Brian Coll of the Buckaroos Brian Coll & the Buckaroos - 1973 Marti, Mari & Argentina Dennis Allen
Brian Coll & The Buckaroos Shelly & The Big Valley- 1973 Ian Corrigan & Country Style 1975 American Pie - 1975 Bill Ryan & Buckshot - 1974
Gerry Black - 1973 Philomena Begley & Country Flavour - 1973 Brian Coll of the Buckaroos 1973 Margo & The Blue Ridge Boys - 1978 Big Tom & Larry Cunningham (KS)
Shelley & The Big Valley - 1973 Bill Ryan & Buckshot - 1973 Frank Coll & The Big Valley - 1973Bill Ryan & Buckshot (JD) Philomena Begley (DL)

Brian Coll & The Buckaroos (KS)

Philomena Begley (KS)

Gerry Black (KS) Shelley and the Big Valley - 1974

All Star Seasons (KS)

Philomena Begley & Her Ramblin Men (KS) Big Ivan (KS) Philomena Begley (LR) American Pie - 1974 (LR) Buckshot - 1974 (LR)
Ronnie Griffiths & American Pie - 1973 (DL) American Pie - 1973 (DL) Apaches - 1980 Brian Coll & The Buckaroos - 1973 Big Time (LR)
American Express (KE) Big Time (PH) Dean Swift & The Boys - 1972 Brian Coll & The Buckaroos - 1970 Apaches (PH)
Billy Jo (PH) Philomena Begley & Her Ramblin Men 1976 (PH) Simon Scott of the Apaches (PH) Bill Ryan &
Buckshot
(PH)
Buckshot - 1971
Philomena Begley & Her Ramblin Men (KS) Philomena Begley (KS) Philomena Begley (KS) Phil Begley (KS) Brendan Quinn & The Bluebirds (KS)
Apaches - 1979 (PH) Phil Begley - 1979 (PH) Phil Begley (LR) Big Tom & Larry 1969 Big Tom & Larry 1969
Bluebirds - 1967 (RM) Adam & The Big Apple - 1980 (PH)

American Pie - 1973

American Pie - 1973

American Pie - 1973

Phil Begley - 1973

Phil Begley - 1973

Phil Begley - 1973

Phil Begley - 1971

Phil Begley - 1972

Phil Begley - 1972

Phil Begley - 1973

Phil Begley - 1975

Big Time - 1974 Big Time - 1974
Big Time - 1974 Big Time - 1974 Big Time - 1975 Big Time - 1975 Buckshot - 1974
Buckshot - 1972 Buckshot - 1973 Buckshot - 1973 Buckshot - 1975 Buckshot - 1973
Buckshot - 1975 Buckshot - 1973 Buckshot - 1975 Buckshot - 1975 Phil Begley - 1975
Phil Begley - 1975 Phil Begley - 1974 Phil Begley - 1975 Phil Begley - 1975 Buckshot - 1974
Big Valley - 1974

American Pie - 1974

American Express (RF) American Express (RF) Buckshot (RF)
American Express (RF) American Pie (RF) American Pie (RF) American Pie (RF) American Pie (RF)
American Pie (RF) American Pie (RF) Apaches (RF) Apaches (RF) Apaches (RF)
Auriol (RF) Big Country (RF) Big Country (RF) Big Country (RF) Big Country (RF)
Big Ivan (RF) Big Ivan (RF) Big Time (RF) Big Time (RF) Big Time (RF)
Big Time (RF) Big Valley (RF) Big Valley (RF) Big Valley (RF) Big Valley (RF)
Bill Quinn (RF) Bill Quinn (RF) Bluebirds (RF) Bluebirds (RF) Bluebirds (RF)
Bluebirds (RF) Bluebirds (RF) Bluebirds (RF) Bluebirds (RF) Bluebirds (RF)
Blue Mtn Boys (RF) Blue River (RF) Bonanza (RF) Bonanza (RF) Buckaroos (RF)
Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF)
Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF)
Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF)
Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF)
Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF)
Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF)
Buckshot (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF) Buckaroos (RF)
 
Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Buckshot (RF) Coming Soon
         
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Additional Photo Credits:

(AG) - Photos contributed by Anthony Grace
(SM) - Photos contributed by Shaun Magee
(FK) - Photos contributed by Francis Kennedy
(TP) - Photos contributed by Teddie Palmer
(DD) - Photos contributed by David Dwane
(DL) - Photos contributed by Dick Lynott
(JM) - Photos contributed by John McGrenra
(JD) - Photos contributed by Joe Dodd
(AL) - Photos contributed by Anne Lynch
(JL) - Photos contributed by Jan Lynch
(KS) - Photos contributed by Kathleen Smith
(FM) - Photos contributed by Frankie McGirr 
(JG) - Photos contributed by Johnny Gallagher 
(JB) - Photos contributed by John Baird
(KE) - Photos contributed by Kevin Erwin
(BW) - Photos contributed by Brian Wynne
(PH) - Photos contributed by Peter Harkin  
(NC) - Photos contributed by Noel Cunningham  
(RM) - Photos contributed by Rod McAuley
(KM) - Photos contributed by Ken McGregor  
 


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In Loving Memory of Grant Gallagher: Sept. 21, 1990 - Nov. 18, 2006