The Pogues' Shane McGowan on

The Pogues' Shane McGowan on Salon today.

MacGowan wears pain and pleasure on his sleeve, along with beer stains, cigarette burns and the remnants of some long-forgotten curry. In Chicago, he once threw up onstage in midset fronting for his new band the Popes, and resumed singing without a hitch. When he broke up with the Pogues, U2's Bono, one of a passel of celebrity admirers that includes Bob Dylan, Johnny Depp and Nick Cave, let him dry out at his Martello tower in Dublin. Just over a year ago, the Guardian reported that MacGowan was admitted to a fancy rehab facility after his pal, Sinéad O'Connor, called the cops on him — allegedly because he was hooked on heroin, a rumor MacGowan later denied after he was ejected from said dry-out program for reasons unknown. O'Connor told reporters that she feared for MacGowan's life, but MacGowan shrugged off the whole incident as if that sort of thing happens every day in his world. "I might as well clear up the fact that she [O'Connor] has made out that I was lying on the floor in a coma," he told the Guardian. "Whereas in fact I was sitting on the sofa having a G and T and watching a Sam Peckinpah movie, 'Cross of Iron.'"

Link Discuss