Daniel O'Donnell pays tribute to Country music singer 'Big Tom'

Big Tom

Big Tom and Larry Cunningham back in the day

Longford country music fans are in mourning this morning following the death of singing sensation Big Tom McBride in hospital earlier today.

The Four Country Roads star's family confirmed that he had passed away in a statement on Tuesday morning.

Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin said he was "very sad" upon hearing the news and said the late singer "charmed and entertained so many over the years".

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Big Tom became a star in the 1960s having formed the Mainliners, later touring with the band for nearly two decades.

Paying tribute this morning, Daniel O'Donnell said: "We all referred to him as the King". "There's people who have a presence and big Tom had it in abundance when he walked in somewhere". "He was the greatest".

Big Tom's career spanned 50 years on the Irish country music scene and he was inducted into the Irish Country Music Awards Hall of Fame in June 2016.

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"Not many people are known by their first name, but that was Big Tom".

"Despite being a living legend, Tom was always an extremely humble and gentle man. Oram, Castleblayney to his core, he always spoke proudly about his Monaghan roots".

Ar Dheis Dé go raibh a anam.

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