RTÉ Confirm Complaints After Dave Fanning’s Comments On Christy Dignam

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Left to Right: Dave Fanning and the late Aslan frontman Christy Dignam

RTÉ has had four official complaints issued after the veteran radio presenter Dave Fanning’s negatively perceived comments following the death of Aslan singer, 63-year-old Christy Dignam last week.

Fanning seemingly bucked the tide of swirling positivity and acclaim for the late Christy who was hailed for his bravery having suffered with addiction, sexual assault as a child and two cancer battles in his latter years, by offering a more candid assessment.

67-year-old jock Fanning claimed perhaps rather insensitively a day after the death of the late singer that he “blew it royally”, when he appeared on Claire Byrne’s mid-morning RTÉ Radio 1 show.

Commenting on the session that the band recorded for ‘The Fanning Sessions’ where a platform was given to many Irish bands on 2FM, Fanning said:

When Aslan did their session near the beginning, they were so pleased and so proud and so like, Wow, this is a rung on the ladder that we have now reached, we can also use this as a demo tape for record companies’.

Fanning caused no little furore amongst the Aslan hardcore following by claiming furthermore:

He blew it royally and he would say later on that, because I was abused at the age of six by a neighbour, and this hole of my life for ages so I filled it, not by trying to get high with heroin, but just by filling it with heroin to keep myself away from the memory of it.’

He intimated that the actions of Christy were ultimately destructive, which has caused uproar and criticism of Fanning when he said…

He just blew it. He left the band for five or six years… He came back then, a bunch of years later with Aslan and they had the biggest hit of all but it kind of went downhill after that in terms of major success.

Perhaps sensing he was going too far himself, Fanning relayed the view that the northside Dublin rockers were in fact a band for the everyman.

They really were the band for the people. The gigs – they played every gig around the country. You wouldn’t believe the places. All the time from Bundoran to Ballybunion to Bunclody, everywhere and they were really at one with the audience.

Although that repetitive touring didn’t blow his mind either!

I don’t necessarily think that’s always a good thing. I like a bit of mystique but it worked for them.”

RTÉ have issued a statement which said: “RTÉ has received 4 formal complaints and 41 emails and calls to the RTÉ Information Office giving negative feedback in relation to Dave Fanning’s comments about Christy Dignam. We have no further comment.”