Vale Val Doonican

Bob Howe  and Val Doonican 1992

Back in early 1992, I had the pleasure of playing guitar for VAL DOONICAN on his Australian and New Zealand tour – almost two dozen shows. Val was a wonderful talent and a kind and generous man. His lovely wife Lynn was there too and there was a party at Tweed Heads for Val’s 65th birthday with lots of ‘senior’ jokes at his expense which he took in good fun.

Val told us that he always remembered his early days in Ireland, when the band would be given terrible ‘digs’ while the star of the show stayed at swanky hotels. He vowed back then he would never be like that and so it was; wherever he stayed, we stayed. It was my first trip to New Zealand and, thanks to Val, the band experience included the Hilton, the Regent, and many other fine accommodations.

I’ll never forget all those airport check-ins with his trademark ‘rocking chair’ being loaded as excess baggage. I hope St. Peter had a comfy rocker and an Aran jumper waiting for him.