Thin Lizzy guitarist Scott Gorham recalled struggling to control Phil Lynott during interviews on American radio stations at the height of the band’s success.

The Irish front man was proud of his national heritage and found it difficult to avoid sabotaging the conversation if someone made a mistake about the island’s history.

“We used to do a load of interviews in America, and he would always want me along there with him,” Gorham told Australian Musician in a recent interview. “It got to the point where, if the DJ got something wrong about Ireland, Phil would go, ‘Whoa, whoa, whoa!’ and he would sit there and start to give him a history lesson about Ireland. ... And, of course I’m like, ‘Really, Phil? Right now?’ And I had to pull him up a couple of times. ‘Phil, we're out here to sell albums. We're not here to give people history lessons on Ireland.’ [He’d say,] ‘Well, they should know – they should know about Ireland!’

“He was very defensive about Ireland. He wanted people to learn about Ireland, because a lot of people didn't even know where Ireland was, if you can believe that these days. Yeah, he was a pretty proud Irishman, you could say that.”

You can watch the interview below.

Gorham went on to describe his late bandmate as one who enjoyed the limelight. “He loved having his picture taken, seeing his name, the band's name,” the guitarist said. “Yeah, he lived it, he lived it in a big way. And good for him – I think you need somebody like that in any band, who wants to take that spotlight. He wants to stand that ground, and he wants people to watch him.

“You could say it's like an ego thing, but even to get onstage is a bit of an ego thing anyway. But he never showed his ego in a bad way, it was more of in an energetic way, let's put it like that. In a proud way.”

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Phil Lynott carved out a lofty reputation as not only one of his generation’s greatest natural rock stars, but as a songwriter’s songwriter.