R.I.P. Freddie Cohill

October 14th , 2017 – Greyhound bus to Boston


“Of all the money, e’er I spent,

I spent it in good company.”


Freddie died. I thought he was was invincible. David Bowie died. Leonard Cohen died. Chris Cornell died. Even Tom Petty died. But I thought Freddie was invincible. If you are one of unlucky readers who has not yet entered the Irish Haven, in Sunset Park, on the corner of 4th ave and 58th street, it is possible you don’t know who I am talking about. If you have been there, it is impossible you don’t know exactly who I am talking about.

Freddie was from Galway. He served in Vietnam. He thought my songs were too sad. If Cork had lost in the hurling or football that morning, he’d be sure to let me know. He would always ask me to do a Galway song. I’d nearly always give it a shot. I play the Irish Haven every now and again on a Sunday night. The gig runs from 8-11pm. For the first half it is typically very quiet. About half way through, Freddie would stroll in, or if he had been there all along, he’d arise from the corner and become animated. He’d be telling me to do something faster. I’d nearly always try. He’d have a drink, and dance with all the women in the bar. Or by himself if needs be. These were always my favourite moments of those nights. Being gently heckled by a dancing Freddie.

I suppose I’ll have to check up on the Cork hurling news myself now. I’m glad he got to see Galway win an All Ireland hurling final.

Freddie died. I thought he was invincible. My condolences to his family and his family at the Irish Haven.

“And all the harm that e’er I’ve done,

Alas, it was to none but me ,

And all I’ve done for want of wit,

To memory now I can’t recall,

So fill to me the parting glass,

Goodnight and joy be with you all.”

– The Parting Glass


R.I.P. ‘Freddie’ Cohill 25 Nov. 1946 – 13 Oct. 2017

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