Dave played on Mondo Bongo and V Deep and toured with the band in the early eighties. He was thought of as the unofficial seventh member of The Boomtown Rats. Dave played keyboards and saxophone and was a session musician of some repute.
The Midsummer’s Gig for Dave aimed to raise funds to erect a bench in his home town of Monkstown, County Dublin in his memory.
Garrick Roberts, Pete Briquette and Bob Geldof took part in a one-off musical tribute at Blackrock Rugby Club and sung Dave, from the In The Long Grass LP, the song that he wrote about his friend's plight .
Geldof was inspired to write 'Dave' after McHale's girlfriend died suddenly. "We had dropped Dave off in London after a tour," he explained. "He had a row with his girlfriend and she took off. Then he found her dead from a five-pound bag of heroin. I wrote this song the next day."