PATRICK SKY nous a quittés RIP

Patrick Sky


Patrick Sky (born Patrick Lynch; October 2, 1940 – May 26, 2021) was an American musician, folk singer, songwriter, and record producer. He was of Irish and Native American ancestry.

Early life[edit]

Sky was born in College Park, Georgia, on October 2, 1940.[1] He was of Creek Indian and Irish descent.[1][2] He grew up near the Lafourche Swamps of Louisiana, where he learned guitar, banjo, and harmonica. He moved to New York City after military service in the early 1960s, and began playing traditional folk songs in clubs before starting to write his own material.[1][2]


A close contemporary of Dave Van Ronk and others in the Greenwich Village folk boom, Sky released four well received albums from 1965 to 1969. He played with many of the leading performers of the period, particularly Buffy Sainte-MarieEric Andersen and the blues singer Mississippi John Hurt (whose Vanguard albums Sky produced). Sky’s song “Many a Mile” became a folk club staple;[1] it has been recorded by Sainte-Marie and others.[2][3]

Having become increasingly disillusioned with the music business, Sky relocated from New York City to Perryville, a small town in South Kingstown, Rhode Island. Being politically radical, the following year Sky wrote, recorded, and released the satirical Songs That Made America Famous in 1973 (the album was recorded in 1971 but rejected by several record companies before it found a home).[1] This album featured the earliest known recorded version of the song “Luang Prabang“, written by Sky’s friend Dave Van Ronk. Sky had honed his politically charged satire in earlier albums, but Songs That Made America Famous raised the stakes. The Adelphi Records website describes how the content was, indeed, shocking, yet how several critics encouraged the public to rush to buy these timely and brilliant “explicit lyrics” while it could.[1][4] Sky gradually moved into the field of Irish traditional music, producing artists, and founding Green Linnet Records in 1973. He was recognised as an expert in building and playing the Irish uilleann pipes, often performing with his wife, Cathy.[2]

Sky edited a reissued version of the important 19th-century dance tune book Ryan’s Mammoth Collection in 1995.[5] This was followed up with a reissue of Howe’s 1000 Jigs and Reels six years later.[6]

Personal life[edit]

Sky married Cathy Larson Sky in 1981. They met three years earlier and moved to North Carolina six years after getting married. Together, they had one child (Liam).[1][7]

Sky died on May 26, 2021, while in hospice care in Asheville, North Carolina. He was 80, and suffered from prostate cancer and bone cancer prior to his death. He had also been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2017.[1][7]


With Cathy Sky

As Record Producer[9]

  • Mississippi John Hurt – Today!Vanguard (1966)
  • Mississippi John Hurt – The Immortal Mississippi John Hurt, Vanguard (1967)
  • Paul Geremia – Just Enough, ‎ Folkways Records (1968)
  • Mississippi John Hurt – Last Sessions, Vanguard (1972)
  • Lou Killen – Sea ChanteysESP Disk (1973)
  • Peter Bellamy – Peter BellamyGreen Linnet (1975)
  • Seamus Ennis – Forty Years Of Irish Piping, Green Linnet (1976)
  • Various – Singing Men Of Ulster, Green Linnet (1977)
  • Tommy Reck – The Stone In The Field, Green Linnet (1977)
  • Eddie Clarke, Seán CorcoranMaeve DonnellyMairead Ni Dhomhnaill – Sailing Into Walpole’s Marsh, Green Linnet (1977)
  • Roy Berkeley with Tim Woodbridge – Roy Berkeley with Tim Woodbridge, Green Linnet (1977)
  • Mick Moloney with Eugene O’Donnell – Mick Moloney with Eugene O’Donnell, Green Linnet (1978)
  • Tim Lyons – Easter Snow, Green Linnet (1978)
  • Rosalie Sorrels – The Lonesome Roving Wolves – Songs & Ballads Of The West, ‎Green Linnet (1980)
  • Bennett Hammond – Walking On AirShanachie (1987)
  • Lorraine Lee, Bennett Hammond – Light As A Feather, Shanachie (1988)

See also[edit]


  1. Jump up to:a b c d e f g h Browne, David (May 30, 2021). “Patrick Sky, Folk Singer and Bob Dylan Contemporary, Dead at 80”Rolling Stone. Retrieved May 31, 2021.
  2. Jump up to:a b c d e Harris, Craig. “Patrick Sky – Biography & History”AllMusic. Retrieved May 31, 2021.
  3. ^ “Cover versions of Many a Mile by Buffy Sainte-Marie | SecondHandSongs”
  4. ^ “Patrick Sky”. Adelphi Records. Retrieved May 31, 2021.
  5. ^ Elias Howe and William Bradbury Ryan, Ryan’s Mammoth Collection: 1050 Reels and Jigs, Hornpipes, Clogs, Walk-arounds, Essences, StrathspeysHighland Flingsand Contra Dances, with Figures, and How to Play Them. Bowing and Fingering Marked. Together with Forty Introductory Studies for the Violin, with Explanations of Bowing, etc. (Boston: Elias Howe, 1883), reformatted facsimile edition published by Mel Bay Publications, Pacific, MO: 1995, ed. Patrick Sky. According to Sky, the book was first published in 1882, a year in advance of the copyright date.
  6. ^ Howe’s 1000 Jigs and Reels (Boston: Elias Howe, c. 1867), reformatted edition published by Mel Bay Publications, Pacific, MO: 2001, ed. Patrick Sky.
  7. Jump up to:a b Carr, Debbie (May 31, 2021). “Patrick Sky, pioneering folk musician, dies aged 80”New Musical Express. Retrieved May 31, 2021.
  8. Jump up to:a b c d e f g h “Patrick Sky – Album Discography”AllMusic. Retrieved May 31,2021.
  9. ^ “Patrick Sky”Discogs.


The refrain of the title song of his third album, “Reality is bad enough, why should I tell the truth?” is included in Buckminster Fuller’s 1970 book, “I Seem to Be a Verb.”


  • Okun, Milton (1968). Something to Sing About. New York: Macmillan.

External links[edit]


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