My buddy Nick Kelly, who has taken his personal life aged 52, was a music author, journalist and photographer who managed to mix crucial acumen with good humour and kindness, an unusual ability. Nick labored for varied publications within the UK and Eire, conveying his enormous information of, and enthusiasm for, varied bands and artists in crisp and entertaining prose.
I first met him in 1993 at College Faculty Dublin, the place we bonded over a shared love of what was then referred to as “impartial” music, of books and writing, and of speaking gibberish in Dublin’s bars.
Nick was born in Dublin, and educated at Terenure school, then College Faculty Dublin. He was one of many 5 youngsters of Yvonne (nee Wheaton), who had labored in a tailor’s earlier than her marriage, and was initially from Southend-on-Sea, and Donal Kelly, an accountant. Nick and his older brother Joe, his gig-going comrade, will need to have been to each music venue in Britain and Eire.
His first gig – the Smiths, in 1984 – was a kind of adolescent occasions that kind the grownup life, a earlier than/after second that looking back may be understood as pivotal. He remained a lifelong fan of Morrissey, however he beloved all types of music, from the jangling guitars of the cult Dublin band the Revenants to the wry melancholia of Americana artists reminiscent of Richmond Fontaine.
On leaving college, Nick began his journalism profession at Scorching Press journal. After time freelancing for publications together with the Occasions, Melody Maker and Phrase, he grew to become a employees journalist on the Irish Impartial in 2003, writing a well-regarded music column together with items on journey and comedy.
Ultimately, Nick moved on from the Irish Impartial and took his journalism to numerous on-line publications. He did, nonetheless, miss the individuals and solidarity he had so loved whereas on the newspaper. A transfer to Barcelona in 2021 re-inspired him, and he spent comfortable days photographing that metropolis, getting quiet pleasure, as he at all times did, from observing the small issues: the morning daylight dappling a constructing, how a tree would possibly bend within the wind.
For private causes, he returned to Eire and moved to the city of New Ross in Wexford. There he rediscovered, and located some comfort in, the rituals of the Catholic church that had been so vital to him as a boy.
Nick was completely with out affectation or swagger; he needed to be prompted to inform anecdotes of his encounters with the well-known and of his journalistic adventures. A real romantic and idealist, he retained, as a buddy of his wrote, one thing near, however extra hard-earned than, a childlike marvel for the world and the individuals in it. Modest and self-effacing, he was at all times prepared to speak, chortle and to take a day because it got here.
He’s survived by Joe, his sisters Anne, Catherine and Teresa, three nieces and two nephews, and will probably be missed by the various mates that he made and saved by his life.