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Following the end of the partnership with husband Terry Woods, Gay began Auto Da Fe, a progressive rock band for the eighties. Here she talks through the years she spent with them...
It was my idea about this band that it should be just live, to play, get paid and go home - not to get involved in some of the record deals I'd had in the folk rock era. So what we did was mostly stay in Ireland, in fact we only did two or three gigs in England. We put out a lot of singles - we got these deals with Stoic and Spartan; that's what we did initially.
The first single was November November produced by Phil Lynott. I knew Phil from my early days in Dublin because he was around all the rocky stuff. He was a very clever man because he just zoomed in and put Whisky In the Jar in the charts. He broke through with it so it was great. I think he was hanging around with my ex-husband whilst I was in Holland with the Dutch Auto Da Fe and they were doing some stuff in the studio's. I think Phillip was looking for other things to do besides be who he was with Thin Lizzy so he started doing some solo work and solo gigs. He wanted the keyboard player in Auto Da Fe - Trevor Knight, in his band. I think that's how we linked up again. We did a support tour with Phil's solo venture just here in Ireland. He got interested in the songwriting of Auto Da Fe and he came in that way. He liked the songs that we were writing - Trevor Knight is the fellow I wrote the songs with. The second single was called Bad Experience
and Phil produced that as well. Then
Man of Mine . Midge Ure played guitar and helped Phillip to produce. We did one of these in his studio. He's a very nice person, so nice to work with, so quiet.I remember Phillip wasn't too well at the time. He'd cough into the microphone and say "record that " ! That cough was the start of his illness actually.
Our next single was All Is Yellow (Hot Hot Hot). They all got tremendous airplay over here (Ireland) which kept the band going because we got great crowds to our gigs.
Auto Da Fe did produce a mini-album eventually and later an album proper.
The former was named 'Five Singles and One Smoked Cod'. Why ?
A single over here is a bag of chips so it was me trying to put some Dublin irony into recording. We had done most of the singles already and we just did one new song which I produced. I loved doing it. So that was the 'smoked cod' because it stuck out as being kind of different. That was in 1984. The following year our big album came out- in 1985. That was called Tatitum. It was based around the French comedian Jacques Tati and the art of humming! We also brought out Magic Moments and Something's Gotten Hold of My Heart  which Marc Almond brought out in England and had a hit with. We put out Credo Credo. That was one of my favourite singles of all times. Nobody could understand what it was about. There was another called Bring Me A Bouquet or 'Bring Me A Bucket' as I called it. I think I gave up after that.....

Gay with the great Phil Lynott
'auto da fe' means 'a trial or test of faith'
Somethings Gotten Hold of My Heart
Before the Irish Auto Da Fe got underway, Gay spent some time living in Holland where the original line-up of the band was formed with Dutch musicians. These two rare adverts come from music papers from the time (around 1980) and appear courtesy of  Martin Stassen.
Wout Pennings, who was with the early Auto Da Fe in Holland sent this picture of the group on the ferry to Ireland for a tour. With Gay and Trevor Knight are Theo Wanders (the drummer), Carel van Rijn,Wout himself and on the right, their roadie Han
'Bring Me A Bucket' - the cover photograph
picture courtesy tp mcloughlin
publicity pic of the later band