Christy Dignam: ‘Heroin wasn’t a excessive for me. It stuffed a gnawing gap, made me really feel regular’ – The Irish Occasions
Refreshing, authentic and resilient. Christy Dignam has all the qualities a speaker needs at an inspiring business conference. But he is the only one who also makes the audience sing (how can I protect you in this crazy world?) And squeezes them out before 4 p.m.
The Aslan singer's public interview with motivational speaker Paul McNeive at the Pendulum Summit at the Dublin Convention Center deals with his early musical development: his father sang Caruso and McCormack at dinner, his own Bel Canto lessons and his epiphany, When A friend indicated that Slade was from Birmingham and that "someone from a place like Finglas could be a singer".
He also speaks of being a victim of sexual abuse at the age of six when a neighbor sent young Christy into the store, then locked him up and attacked him when he arrived home. Dignam speaks to answer why he always felt “a hole, a gnawing void” that he tried to fill with heroin with a single, with an album.
"I think it was sexual abuse. He said: Don't tell anyone, I thought I did something wrong. I remember the cloud came down over me when that happened. It was never the same. "
Later he found something with drugs to fill the hole. It wasn't a high, it was that "everything went away. I just felt normal."
Before that, there were the first few days when the 10 local bands did "Cherry Picking" to found Aslan that "got huge and all the crap you tell yourself". They found a pigsty – literally a pigsty – in an old farm near the airport and dragged amps in a Ballymun shopping cart to the airport daily to practice from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm six days a week for a year]
This Is – the first single and "the first decent song we ever wrote" – was originally "a bit rocky," he says. Inspired by Annie Lennox, the style turned into the song it became. Borrowing is part of the music, says Dignam.
"It is terrible, in schools in places like Finglas we were told that if we study well, we could become mechanics." And if we had done really well, we could get a job at the tax office. "Higher demands did not arise. They were therefore poorly equipped for success.
Dignam talks about the shock at the height of their arrival at the airport when limousines are waiting for them: "You have to think we are the bleeding Pet Shop Boys!"
The abuse from his childhood was always in the background. "I felt unworthy, I almost sabotaged it. I sabotaged it very well. "
They should be "the next U2" before they slip into addiction or "dive into addiction". He was fired from the band. Aslan "finally kissed and made up", but only after years of bitterness.
Dignam describes how he cleaned up in a monastery in Thailand and paints a vision of hell: school children who learn the lesson by bus: "This is how you will end if you use drugs" and take pictures , the monks behind them after giving Dignam and about 20 other addicts a potion that made them all vomit. "It was hardcore. I felt that if it was too easy to stop, I would go back to it. "
He speaks about the contexts of the songs. "These are the hands of a tired man" is about his father, an upholsterer who had nothing and lived in a community center.
"This is the face of an adolescent mother" refers to social change. “The Catholic Church lost its influence over Ireland. Teenage mothers did not have to go to the laundry, but could live at home. "
"Everyone beats you" is about the disapproving attitude of the Irish.
Dignam also talks about how he learns that he has blood cancer and that he does not accept it. He says to the doctor, "Go back to Trinity and return your degree because you have no idea what you're talking about." , But "he was right." He did chemo and talked to people for hours. He found that “people who were really defeated [about their illness] almost all died. Some of those who were positive survived. "
"In a way, cancer was the best thing that ever happened to me," because he realized that the only thing that mattered to him was "seeing my grandchild's communion or my granddaughter's confirmation." , , everything I'm looking for is here in front of me all the time. "
"I don't want to do everything political with our means, but for a nation of size," "Government after government has done nothing to help the housing crisis or the health crisis." He looks at the 7,000 people, including many entrepreneurs, and reminds them that "it will never happen if we leave it up to politicians."
Then he sings This Is. And then Crazy World.