There has been no editing of history, just an attempt not to prolong the thread. I had sent this as a PM to Joe Offer after reading the threads which but I suppose I will go public now.
I don't really know Damien but I did meet him a few times maybe 10 years ago as he used to be a regular visitor to the bi-annual Bangor (North Wales) Festival (a weekened of pub sessions and party after pub closed).
What I read in that thread is nothing like the Damien I've met. Sure he had and has drink problems but there was never any "oh my god Damien's here take care or he'll nut you" - in fact he was well liked.
One festival after a party, we both ended up stopping at the same house and he asked me if I fancied some of his home made wine which he had in the boot of his car, I wound up drinking and exchanging songs with him until maybe 6am. It remains one of my favorite "folk memories".
This brings me onto the "they are all crap" comment. I didn't even know that Damien was an up and coming "folk star" until a year later. He wasn't the sort to push himself - clearly an outstanding musician but just another session player as far as I was concerned.
I know the reported behavior was completely unacceptable but going by the little I know about him, he was acting completely out of character on that occasion and I'd hate to see him "condemned for life" for what I assume was a one off - particularly (although I've never been involved in public displays of violence) as I know the problems of wrestling with alcohol only too well.