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Irish Republican ballads - need advice

GUEST,asdfjk 23 Jun 06 - 07:33 PM
Snuffy 23 Jun 06 - 07:50 PM
GUEST,maryrrf 23 Jun 06 - 08:20 PM
Alice 23 Jun 06 - 08:36 PM
Fergie 23 Jun 06 - 10:53 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 23 Jun 06 - 11:15 PM
Don Firth 23 Jun 06 - 11:41 PM
Don Firth 23 Jun 06 - 11:45 PM
Peace 24 Jun 06 - 01:16 AM
NH Dave 24 Jun 06 - 01:19 AM
Big Al Whittle 24 Jun 06 - 03:51 AM
Big Tim 24 Jun 06 - 04:12 AM
captainbirdseye 24 Jun 06 - 04:22 AM
captainbirdseye 24 Jun 06 - 04:25 AM
Fiolar 24 Jun 06 - 08:56 AM
Big Tim 24 Jun 06 - 09:52 AM
thehiker 24 Jun 06 - 10:57 AM
Big Tim 24 Jun 06 - 11:35 AM
Tannywheeler 24 Jun 06 - 12:19 PM
ard mhacha 24 Jun 06 - 01:37 PM
The Borchester Echo 24 Jun 06 - 01:55 PM
Big Tim 24 Jun 06 - 02:37 PM
The Borchester Echo 24 Jun 06 - 02:52 PM
Les from Hull 24 Jun 06 - 03:14 PM
Bob the Postman 24 Jun 06 - 03:17 PM
The Borchester Echo 24 Jun 06 - 03:25 PM
Big Al Whittle 24 Jun 06 - 03:52 PM
The Borchester Echo 24 Jun 06 - 04:07 PM
Tattie Bogle 24 Jun 06 - 04:31 PM
GUEST,asdfjk 24 Jun 06 - 07:40 PM
Big Al Whittle 24 Jun 06 - 10:45 PM
Mickey191 25 Jun 06 - 01:26 AM
Big Tim 25 Jun 06 - 01:50 AM
Big Tim 25 Jun 06 - 02:02 AM
Big Al Whittle 25 Jun 06 - 02:39 AM
Big Tim 25 Jun 06 - 03:25 AM
Keith A of Hertford 25 Jun 06 - 06:11 AM
van lingle 25 Jun 06 - 06:59 AM
GUEST 25 Jun 06 - 07:12 AM
Big Tim 25 Jun 06 - 07:40 AM
GUEST 25 Jun 06 - 12:41 PM
Les from Hull 25 Jun 06 - 01:19 PM
Les from Hull 25 Jun 06 - 01:20 PM
MartinRyan 25 Jun 06 - 01:22 PM
akenaton 25 Jun 06 - 07:18 PM
Big Tim 26 Jun 06 - 01:39 AM
The Borchester Echo 26 Jun 06 - 03:40 AM
Big Tim 26 Jun 06 - 05:11 AM
Fleadhman 26 Jun 06 - 01:33 PM
Declan 26 Jun 06 - 01:53 PM
mrsmac 27 Jun 06 - 05:16 AM
GUEST,Gaeilgesinger 27 Jun 06 - 08:00 PM
ard mhacha 28 Jun 06 - 09:59 AM
mrsmac 28 Jun 06 - 10:14 AM
GUEST 28 Jun 06 - 11:17 AM
GUEST,Fred McCormick 28 Jun 06 - 11:49 AM
GUEST 28 Jun 06 - 12:25 PM
GUEST 28 Jun 06 - 12:26 PM
captainbirdseye 28 Jun 06 - 12:52 PM
Declan 28 Jun 06 - 01:34 PM
Declan 28 Jun 06 - 01:48 PM
Declan 28 Jun 06 - 04:40 PM
Amergin 29 Jun 06 - 12:48 AM
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Subject: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST,asdfjk
Date: 23 Jun 06 - 07:33 PM

hi

I'm looking for an Irish republican ballard - something quite gentle which perhaps also mentions the family (mothers sending sons of to war, fathers killed in battle) in the context of uprisings and rebellions but also in the general context of oppression. Can anyone suggest something suitable?

So far I've been looking at Fields of Athenrye, The Lonely Woods of Upton but I wonder if there are any here who could help me expand my knowledge. All tips and hints gratefully received.

thanks

asdfjk


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Snuffy
Date: 23 Jun 06 - 07:50 PM

I'd never have thought of The Lonely Woods Of Upton as "gentle".

But this might fit the bill WIND THAT SHAKES THE BARLEY


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST,maryrrf
Date: 23 Jun 06 - 08:20 PM

How about Irish Soldier Boy . That has a passage about the mother seeing the son off to war.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Alice
Date: 23 Jun 06 - 08:36 PM

ballard?


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Fergie
Date: 23 Jun 06 - 10:53 PM

Could it be this one

Dying Rebel

The night was dark and the fight was over,
The moon shone down O'Connell Street,
I stood alone where brave men perished,
Those men have gone to their God to meet

My only son was shot in Dublin
Fighting for his country bold.
He fought for Ireland and Ireland only
The harp, the shamrock, green, white and gold.

The first I met was a grey-haired father
Searching for his only son
I said "Old Man, there's no use searching
For up to heaven your son has gone"

The old man cried out broken-hearted
Bending o'er I heard him say
I knew my son was too kind-hearted,
I knew my son would never yield

The last I met was a dying rebel
Bending low I heard him say
God bless my home in dear Cork City
God bless the cause for which I die.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 23 Jun 06 - 11:15 PM

I have always been partial to The Minstral Boy

Haunting tune....and with much left un-saide.

Sincerely,
Gargoyle


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Don Firth
Date: 23 Jun 06 - 11:41 PM

Ballard is a district in the northwest quadrant of Seattle. Ethnically, Scandinavians probably predominate there. Location of the Nordic Museum. . . .

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Don Firth
Date: 23 Jun 06 - 11:45 PM

Yah, shure, you betcha!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Peace
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 01:16 AM

Ballard is a doctor who concocted dog food.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: NH Dave
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 01:19 AM

Kevin Barry

Dave


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 03:51 AM

I always like The Galtee Mountain Boy.

The stunning melody is one aspect.

The boy rebel in the song has been "arrested by Free Staters and sentenced for to die" - so it explains in a way why resolution continues to elude all parties in this conflict. Avoiding the two legs good/four legs bad, hate the English/love the Irish - simplistic sort of thing.


It does mention and pay homage to some people who don't get mentioned very often in songs, and their families are still around have expressed their appreciation to Christy Moore for popularising this song.

Plus the rebels on the run verses express the patriotism and love of Ireland with great lyricism.

its a very personal thing though. The rebel ballads have amongst them the most beautiful songs ever written. I'm sure you'll find something appropriate.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Tim
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 04:12 AM

Here's another (sung as the third) verse for "Irish Soldier Boy". This is transcribed from Diarmuid O'Neill's 1963 recording and there's one word that I can't make out. Can any one help?

O grand it was to see him go in his youthful strength and pride,
As straight and thin as the mountain ash that grows by Inish? side,
He left a memory in the heart that time can never destroy,
And said, 'mother dear, I know you'll pray for your Irish soldier boy'.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: captainbirdseye
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 04:22 AM

Bold Fenian Men,Kelly the boy from killane,but steer clear of Sean South.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: captainbirdseye
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 04:25 AM

Phil Coulters ballad The Town ILoved so well,not a republican ballad ,but worth singing.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Fiolar
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 08:56 AM

Big Tim: I know the second line of the verse you mention as follows:
"As firm and straight as a Mountain Ash, that grows by Inney's side".

"Inney" as in the "River Inney".
Hope that helps.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Tim
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 09:52 AM

Ah, yes, Fiolar, you're probably right. At least it makes more sense than 'Inish'.

Percy French's famous 'bridge of Finnea' is over the River Inny and the River is symbolically significant as it is in the geographical centre of Ireland.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: thehiker
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 10:57 AM

This is the version of the Dying Rebel I have been singing for years.
This arrangement of the verses seems more correct to me viz a viz the story being told. The author as is sometimes the case has used poetic licence in his lyrics, at the time of the rebellion the main thoroughfare in Dublin was called Sackville Street and the name wasn't changed to O'Connell Street untill after independence. The Irish flag is not Green White and Gold but Green White and Orange.Green to represent the Irish Nationalists Orange to represent the Northern Protestants and White to represent unity and peace between the two (sic)

Dying Rebel

The night was dark and the fight was over,
The moon shone down O'Connell Street,
I stood alone where brave men perished,
Those men have gone to their God to meet

The First I met was a dying rebel
Bending low I heard him say
God bless my home in dear Cork City
God bless the cause for which I die.

The next I met was a grey-haired father
Searching for his only son
I said "Old Man, there's no use searching
For up to heaven your son has gone"

The old man cried out broken-hearted
Bending o'er I heard him say
I knew my son was too kind-hearted,
I knew my son would never yield

My only son was shot in Dublin
Fighting for his country bold.
He fought for Ireland and Ireland only
The harp, the shamrock, green, white and gold.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Tim
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 11:35 AM

TIPPERARY SO FAR AWAY (Sean Treacy)

The [G] sun had set with it`s [D] golden rays
And the [C] bitter [D] fight was [G] o'er
Our [D] brave boys sleep [C] beneath the [D] clay,
On [G] this earth they [C] are no [D] more
The moon shone down on the [C] battle[D]field
Where a [G] dying [C] rebel [D] lay
His [G] arms were crossed on his [D] body outstretched,
And his [C] life's blood [D] flowed [G] away.


There were none to weep for you Sean astore
Or were keen in to sing in your praise
To decide your deeds like the Gaels of yore
On your face we no longer gaze
In that kingdom of love may your dear soul rest
On the word that we fervently pray
That we`ll all meet above the old friends we love
In Tipperary so far away

The soldiers of Erin bore him high
On their shoulders, they solemnly tread
And many a heart with a tearful sigh
Wept for our patriot dead
In silence they lowered him into the grave
To rest till his reckoning day
Sean Treacy who died, his home to save
In Tipperary so far away.

This is a classic old-IRA lament. Sean Treacy, a major old-IRA action man, age 25, was shot dead in Dublin in 1920.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Tannywheeler
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 12:19 PM

One from the Clancy Bros. & Tommy Makem, some years back. Started:
1)" 'Twas early, early in the spring;
    The birds did whistle and sweetly sing,
    Changing their notes from tree to tree,
    And the song they sang was "All Ireland Free."
       (Old Ireland free?)

2)" 'Twas early, early in the night.
    The (Allman? Yeoman?) cavalry gave me a fright.
    "    "       "       "    was my downfall,
    And taken was I by Lord Cornwall."

I remember most of the rest--the rebel is taken to places of imprisonment, he passes his "aged father"'s(& aged or tender mother's) door, passes his first cousin on the road(who betrayed him), gets locked in a guardhouse, tried, and sentenced to hang. Called "The Croppy Boy", a nickname for the rebels who kept their hair "cropped", or cut short. Ends:

"It was in Dungannon this young man died,
And in Dungannon his body lies.
Now all good people who do pass by
Just drop a tear for The Croppy Boy."

I didn't remember the title until I thought my way through the last verse. Enjoy. I think Liam sings this one on whichever album it's on. There's quite a turn on the word "tear" in the last line. Tw


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: ard mhacha
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 01:37 PM

I like those beautiful sad verses in `Erin go Bragh`,one of which I can re-call,

A great foreign Captain was boasting that day,

saying give me three hours and i`ll blow them away,

but a big Mauser bullet got stuck in his craw,

and he died of lead poison in Erin bo bragh.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 01:55 PM

Good grief! I've just found the lyrics referred to above which I've never heard before:

http://www.ireland-information.com/irishmusic/eringobragh.shtml

The Erin Go Bragh I know is a satire on anti-Irish and anti-Highland prejudice among the Lowland Scots (and the Edinburgh police in particular:

http://www.dickgaughan.co.uk/songs/texts/eringobr.html

I assume the Irish text is a WWII parody of the Scots. Anybody know?


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Tim
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 02:37 PM

'Erin go Bragh', aka, 'A Row in the Town', it's original title, was written by Peadar Kearney, who also wrote, 'The Soldier's Song', the national anthem of Ireland.

Kearney fought in the 1916 rebellion, spent time on the run and in internment. His 'big Mauser bullets' was based on hard experience.

He was a gentle, idealistic patriot who died in poverty in 1942. Check the views of his nephew Dominic Behan on the subject.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 02:52 PM

According to Dick Gaughan, the Scots text is C19. So did Peadar Kearney base his song on this? His nephew was not, after all, averse to 'adapting' trad stuff in the time-honoured fashion . . .


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Subject: Lyr Add: GRACE (Frank & Sean O'Meara)
From: Les from Hull
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 03:14 PM

Might I make plea for 'Grace', not so much a Republican Ballad as a love song illustrating the sad results of armed conflict.

As we gather in the chapel here in old Kilmainham Jail
I think about these past few weeks, oh will they say we've failed?
From our school days they have told us we must yearn for liberty
Yet all I want in this dark place is to have you here with me

(chorus) Oh Grace just hold me in your arms and let this moment linger
They'll take me out at dawn and I will die
With all my love I place this wedding ring upon your finger
There won't be time to share our love for we must say goodbye

Now I know it's hard for you my love to ever understand
The love I bare for these brave men, the love for my dear land
But when Pádraic called me to his side down in the GPO
I had to leave my own sick bed, to him I had to go

Oh, Grace just hold me in your arms and let this moment linger
They'll take me out at dawn and I will die
With all my love I'll place this wedding ring upon your finger
There won't be time to share our love for we must say goodbye

Now as the dawn is breaking, my heart is breaking too
On this May morn as I walk out, my thoughts will be of you
And I'll write some words upon the wall so everyone will know
I loved so much that I could see his blood upon the rose.

story here


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 03:17 PM

Croppy Boy in Digitrad


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 03:25 PM

Phil Colclough's Song For Ireland isn't specifically about Republicanism but a very gentle and beautiful melody unfolding a vision of a land 'where no-one had to fight'.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 03:52 PM

The late Hamish Imlach used to a belting rendition of that version of Erin Go Bragh. Funny how songs somehow bring people back for a moment or two.

great song - not really the 'gentle' thing this guy was asking for.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 04:07 PM

Well, no quite, but it's the only text I knew until the Kearney one was mentioned. In my post above, I meant to write that it was, presumably, an adaptation from the First World War/Irish Civil War era but an extra 'I' slipped in.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 04:31 PM

"Four Green fields" which is the digitrad: gentle tune and very symbolic.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST,asdfjk
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 07:40 PM

Wow..

thanks everyone for your help with this. Its really appreciated - and gives me plenty to look at.

And sorry I spelt ballad as ballard - that must quite a dumb thing to do on a forum like this - but then spelling isn't my strong point!

thanks again

asdfjk


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 24 Jun 06 - 10:45 PM

Don't worry - a positive coven of bad spellers here - incidentally what was the occasion you wanted it for? were you going to sing it yourself, or play a recording?

Its funny looking down this list. I associate all these songs with different singers whose music I have loved.

Tony Capstick with The Croppy Boy, Tommy Dempsey with Tiperrary So Far Away, Hamish as I've said with Erin Go Bragh, Paddy Reilly and Christy with Galtee Mountain Boy, Four Green Fields and The Town I loved So Well with Bob Stokes....and I've never really considered myself an Irish song enthusiast, just love a good song and a good singer.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Mickey191
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 01:26 AM

How about the Patriot Game?

My name is O'Hanlon and I've just gone sixteen,
My home is in Monaghan where I was weaned.
I've learned all my life cruel England to blame,
And now I'm a part of the Patriot Game.

Think there are three more verses-gone off in the mist of time & old age. Great song-based on a true event.


Last verse:
And now as I lie here my body all holes,
I think of those traitors who bargained and sold.
I wish that my rifle had given the same             To those quislings who sold out the Patriot Game.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Tim
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 01:50 AM

Slán Libh ('goodbye')

Sisters and brothers, comrades all,
Who trod the olden road with me,
Who, answering a nation's call,
Dear mother Éire swore to free.
To you who carry on the fight,
My share of deathless hope, I give,
Before I pass into the night,
Slán Libh [a chairde], Slán Libh.

Your work allows no time for rest,
Your longest life's the merest span,
Your cause: the bravest, noblest, best,
That e'er inspired the heart of man.
Fight on! Fear not! For God is just,
The tyrant too, shall cease to live,
And pray for him, whose bones are dust,
Slán Libh [a chairde], Slán Libh.

"Slán Libh", a simple Irish phrase,
Of parting, but to meet again,
Twixt comrades, who, through nights and days,
For Éire's sake - strove might and main.
For her dear sake, remember me,
For her dear sake, my faults forgive,
God speed the fight for liberty!
Slán Libh [a chairde], Slán Libh.

Words by Peadar Kearney, music by Sean Barlow, one of Kearney's old friends from the Abbey Theatre, (and the man charged with the task of physically barring Seán O'Casey from the stage in 1926 at the time of the row over The Plough and Stars).

This ia a beautiful song, seldom recorded, but it has been by Dominic Behan and more recently by the brilliant Brian Moore.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Tim
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 02:02 AM

Down by the Glenside

'Twas down by the glenside, I met an old woman,
A-plucking young nettles, nor saw I was coming,
I listened a while to the song she was humming,
Glory O! Glory O! to the bold Fenian men.

'Tis fifty long years since I saw the moon beaming,
On strong manly forms and on eyes with hope gleaming,
I see them again, sure, through all my day-dreaming,
Glory O! Glory O! to the bold Fenian men.

When I was a girl, their marching and drilling,
Awoke in the glenside, sounds awesome and thrilling,
They loved poor old Ireland and to die they were willing,
Glory O! Glory O! to the bold Fenian men.

Some died by the glenside, some died 'mid the stranger,
And wise men have told us their cause was a failure,
But they stood by old Ireland and never feared danger,
Glory O! Glory O! to the bold Fenian men.

I passed on my way, God be praised that I met her,
Be life long or short, I shall never forget her,
We may have brave men - but we'll never have better,
Glory O! Glory O! to the bold Fenian men.

Another classic from the pen of Peadar Kearney.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 02:39 AM

What's the John Wayne film that songs in. He's an army captain, his estranged wife comes to see him, because his son has joined the cavalry, but she doesn't want him to.

The soldiers do a cabaret turn and sing it to her. If Kearney wrote it - looks like it was an anacrhonism, or whatever they call it.

I believe the director was an Irish patriotic chap.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Tim
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 03:25 AM

Kearney definitely wrote it. (I couldn't care less about John Wayne and his crappy films).


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 06:11 AM

I think it was Rio Grande, the second of the John Ford trilogy of cavalry films.
Glory Oh,
keith.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: van lingle
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 06:59 AM

Did anyone mention The Foggy Dew? As I understand it, someone put words to an older tune to make an IRA recruiting song. Hamish Imlach did an excellent version of it.I'm sure it's in the DT.vl


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 07:12 AM

re why do I need it?

I'm making a video for an exhibition about the 50th anniversary of the Hungarian uprising.

In the film a small boy plays a PS2 game of a rebellion (in this case star wars battlefront) whilst a woman (his mothers) sits beside him and sings an Irish ballad dealing with rebellion. She's an opera singer and sings the song soprano without accompaniment. The work thus approaches the subject of rebellion obliquly by using documents of real and fictional rebellions. As she sings of an uprising of maybe 90 years ago her son takes part in an uprising set in the fiction of space. So it will be an operatic voice // folk melody // laser fire ambient sort of a soundtrack.

asdfjk


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Tim
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 07:40 AM

Interesting. You could do worse than listen to Irish soprano Mary O'Hara's 1960 recording of 'Down by the Glenside', accompanying herself on the Irish harp. (Remember there was a Fenian rebellion in Ireland in 1867).


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 12:41 PM

John Ford has fazmily who fought in the uprising and in the Tan War.

How about Stuff Your Decommission?

Or Sniper's Promise?


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Les from Hull
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 01:19 PM

Here's a useful resource -


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Les from Hull
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 01:20 PM

oops

great CD from Ron Kavana


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: MartinRyan
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 01:22 PM

In the context, Big Tim's suggestion re Mary O'Hara is a good 'un.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: akenaton
Date: 25 Jun 06 - 07:18 PM

Erin go bragh is on Hamish's first LP for Transatlantic EXTRA1039
recorded in 1966...I've got most of his stuff
Hamish sang these songs with great gusto..eyes flashing and teeth bared.
On the same record he does a great version of "The foggy dew".
I'll never forget the first time I heard him live... deliver the line
"And Britannia's Huns with their long range guns,
blew death through the foggy dew"

As sang it as if he had just stood in dog shit....Ake


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Tim
Date: 26 Jun 06 - 01:39 AM

A ROW IN THE TOWN
A Street Ballad of Easter Week

I'll sing you a song of a row in the town,
When the Green Flag went up and the Red Flag came down,
'Twas the neatest and sweetest row ever you saw,
When we played the best game played in Erin Go Bragh.

A thousand brave fellows of every degree,                                                                                     With rifles and shotguns, they swore to be free,
One fine Easter Monday, they laughed at the 'Law',
And played the best game played in Erin Go Bragh.

A great English Captain was raging that day,
Saying, 'Give me one hour and I'll blow them away',
But he never thought, what he afterwards saw,
The dead khaki soldiers in Erin Go Bragh.

In thousands and thousands right on us they poured,
Their big guns and small guns, they rattled and roared,
But our big Mauser bullets got stuck in their craw,
And they died from lead-poisoning in Erin Go Bragh,

Our brave De Valera was down at Ringsend,
The honour of Ireland to hold and defend,
He had no veteran soldiers but volunteers raw,
Playing sweet Mauser music for Erin Go Bragh

Bold Kent and his comrades, like lions at bay,
From the South Union windows poured death and dismay,
Their was fear in their souls when the Saxon swine saw,
How we played the best game played in Erin Go Bragh.

A health to Ned Daly and all his command,
From the Four Courts to King Street, their fighting was grand,
For the might of the Empire, they cared not a straw,
But played the best game played in Erin Go Bragh.

God rest gallant Pearse and his comrades who died,
Jim Connolly and Mallin, MacDonagh, MacBride,
And here's to young Heuston, who gave one 'Hurrah',
And faced the machine guns for Erin Go Bragh.

Forget not the men of the brave rank and file,
And the lion-hearted women of Erin's green isle,
Let true men salute them in wonder and awe,
The bravest and greatest in Erin Go Bragh.

O, glory to Dublin, it's hers, the renown,
Through long generations her fame shall go down,
And children shall tell how their forefathers saw,
The red blaze of freedom o'er Erin Go Bragh.

This is the full version of 'Erin Go Bragh' as published by Seamus De Burca (Bourke) in his 1957 biography of his uncle Peadar Kearney. Presumably, it's pretty close to the original. De Burca was the son of the actor and writer Patrick J. Bourke (1883-1932) who was married to Kearney's sister, Margaret Mary. De Burca claimed that P.J. Bourke was the first person ever to sing 'The Soldier's Song' (apart from the composers, Kearney and Patrick Heeney), in his house at 10 Lower Dominick Street.

It's a pity that Hamish Imlach's version wasn't included on his recent double CD instead of one of the rubbishy tracks that were. I think it's probable that Hamish got the song from the singing of Josh Macrae.                                                                                                

Go brách = 'for ever'. With the exception of De Valera, all of the men named in the song were executed in 1916.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: The Borchester Echo
Date: 26 Jun 06 - 03:40 AM

'Original' Erin Go Brách?

At 2.52 on 24 June I wrote:

According to Dick Gaughan, the Scots text is C19. So did Peadar Kearney base his song on this? His nephew was not, after all, averse to 'adapting' trad stuff in the time-honoured fashion

Shortly after which, surprise, surprise, someone raised Dominic Behan's The Patriot Game using the trad tune The Nightingale (which didn't, of course, deter Dom from having a go at Dylan for doing the same with With God On Our Side).

So what were Kearney's sources?


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Big Tim
Date: 26 Jun 06 - 05:11 AM

There came to the beach, a poor exile of Erin,
The dew on his thin robe was heavy and chill,
For his country he sighed, when at twilight repairing,
To wander alone by the wind beaten hill.
But the day-star attracted his eyes' sad devotion,
For it rose o'er his own native isle of the ocean,
Where once in the fire of his youthful emotion,
He sang the bold anthem of Erin Go Bragh.

From 'The Exile of Erin' by Glasgow-born Thomas Campbell (1777-1844).
(Campbell also wrote'Hohenlinden', and, 'Lord Ullin's Daughter').

Campbell's poetry was very popular in Victorian and Edwardian times and Kearney was a voracious reader. However I have no idea if this is what Gaughan is referring to.

I suspect that Kearney probably did read the poem and that he picked up the term, 'Erin go bragh' from it. Other than those three words, I see little similarity between the two. His main 'source' was, I believe, from within his own head.

With other of his songs, this was not so: e.g. 'The Three-Coloured Ribbon'.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Fleadhman
Date: 26 Jun 06 - 01:33 PM

Tannywheeler,
In the Croppy Boy, the town that's mentioned is Duncannon which is in Co. Wexford as opposed to Dungannon which is in Co. Tyrone.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Declan
Date: 26 Jun 06 - 01:53 PM

Gaughan's song is about a man from Argyll who returns to Scotland having visited Ireland, is mistaken for an Irishman by a policeman, is abused and ends up killing the policeman.

It has little to do with the Row in the Town in theme, but could well share the same air at a quick glance. I haven't heard Kearney's song sung. Kearney was a lyricist who seems to have based some of his songs on airs of songs that were popular at the time. This was and is still nothing new, just a bit of healthy recycling


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: mrsmac
Date: 27 Jun 06 - 05:16 AM

What about "Aghadoe"? the lyrics are in digitrad. There was a cd brought out by RTE to commemorate the 1798 rising called "who fears to Speak", and Liam Clancy sings this song beautifully on it. Also featured on that CD are Len Graham and Aine Ui Cealliaigh along with the RTE concert Orchestra. You might well find what you are looking for there.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST,Gaeilgesinger
Date: 27 Jun 06 - 08:00 PM

Only Our Rivers Run Free is a beautiful ballad.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: ard mhacha
Date: 28 Jun 06 - 09:59 AM

I heard Tommy Fleming singing `Only our Rivers` I would say the best version I have heard.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: mrsmac
Date: 28 Jun 06 - 10:14 AM

i agree ard mhacha its on Tommy Fleming's "the Contender" and it gives me the shivers every time i hear it.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Jun 06 - 11:17 AM

I Like the song, Lough Sheelin Eviction sung by the Wolfe Tones


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST,Fred McCormick
Date: 28 Jun 06 - 11:49 AM

I've always been very fond of Kilkenny by the Noire, which seems to fit the bill eminently and which can be heard on the Sarah and Rita Keane CD At the Setting of the Sun. Demon. FIEND CD 771. If you can't get hold of a copy it is set to the same tune as Tipperary so Far Away


1.        Mother agra, I am leaving you now, to the wars I am bound to go.
To fight for the cause of my country, where the pretty green shamrocks grow.
Tis sorry I am to be leaving you now, but you know I'll return once more.
When the fighting is done and the battle won, to Kilkenny by the Noire.

2.        These words he spoke, just at evening, to his mother fond and true.
The tears fell fast as he took her hand to bid her a last adieu.
Then stepping quickly he turned aside and marched through the open door.
He heaved a sigh and bid good-bye to Kilkenny by the Noire.

3.        The years rolled by as one by one fell the soldiers brave and true.
Not a letter at all did his mother receive from the lines where the bullets flew.
Yet ever she prayed for the one who had strayed, she prayed he'd return once more,
when the fighting was done and the battle won to Kilkenny by the Noire.

4.        The pale moon shone down on the battlefield where the battle was fought and won.
The wild birds flew over the wounded who'd ne'er see the rising sun.
And there in the quiet of that moonlit night a dying young soldier lay.
His comrades stood round as he lay on the ground and these words he did say.

5.        Tell my dear mother how bravely I fought and died as a soldier may.
With her picture held close to my bleeding breast as my life's blood was ebbing away.
Tell her tis home, never more shall I roam, I will ne'er see her face ever more.
Or the home that I left where in childhood Iplayed, in Kilkenny by the Noire.

6.        Slowly and sadly they laid him to rest in the spot where he fought and fell
No stone or mark did they place o'er his grave, his deeds and his valour to tell And there quite forgotten he sleeps his last sleep, 'neath the shamrock he fought for of yore.
Except by the one who is praying there still in Kilkenny by the Noire.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Jun 06 - 12:25 PM

Gallipoli.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Jun 06 - 12:26 PM

song for marcella is a good one....

Also Gary Og's Plastic Bullets.

Then there is Town I loved so well


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: captainbirdseye
Date: 28 Jun 06 - 12:52 PM

or oh for the orange and the lily.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Declan
Date: 28 Jun 06 - 01:34 PM

Although the marble in Kilkenny is Black th river is the Nore rahter than the Nore. The Town I Loved so Well a Republican song? I would have classed it as a Peace song.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Declan
Date: 28 Jun 06 - 01:48 PM

Serves me right, I point out a typo in someones post and make two myself!


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Declan
Date: 28 Jun 06 - 04:40 PM

Now back to the topic. I am not personally a fan of republican ballads, but I get to hear a lot of them despite my best intentions.

I don't think that any of the songs on the following list exactly meet your criteria but might be adapted to do so, or may spark some ideas in others.

1. The Mother by P H Pearse

This is a poem in which a Mother says she does not grudge the lives of her two sons who fought and died for their country. Padraig Pearse was the leader of the Irish Volunteers in the Easter Rebellion in 1916. Himself and his brother Willie were excecuted by the British for their part in the Rebellion. Big drawback here is that I don't know if it has ever been put to music (but someone else around here might).

2. The Time is Come by Christy Moore

This is a song of a mother and son saying goodbye. Although it isn't that explicit from the lyrics the context of the song is that the son is one of the H Block hunger strikers who is dying in 1981. Although the song has a traditional feel to it, it might be a bit too modern for what you're looking for.

3. Bramblethorn by Sarah Daniels

This is a beautiful song recorded by the group Brodrick (featuring Sarah's son Luke) and by Niamh Parsons (with Graham Dunne and Anne Parsons-Dunne) on the album Hearts Desire. It is not a Republican song (and is in fact English) but it tells of the plight of women left at home while their men are away fighting in an unspecified war. Very much an anti-wa

4. A Stor Mo Chroi (trad recorded by various people as discussed in a recent mudcat thread) is a song in which a parent (I always think of it as a mother) is saying goodbyre to a child. THe context of the song is emigration rather than war, but it meets some of the criteria.

5. Skibereen

This song is very much a Republican rallying cry and has a beautiful air. THe parent telling the story in this case is almost certainly a father.

6. Danny Boy (origins controversial at least around here!)

In some ways this song may seem the obvious choice and has been interpreted by some as being about a Mother who is saying goodbye to son on his way to war. Before the usual suspects jump in let eme be the first to say that, desite the popular perception there is some doubt as to just how Irish this song is, although the air was definitely collected in Derry at some stage in the past.

I hope these suggestions are useful or may spark some ideas that will lead you to the song you are looking for. I can't help feeling there's a song out there that exacly fits the bill of whatg you are looking for, but I haven't been able to identify which one it might be yet.


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Subject: RE: Irish Republican ballards - need advice
From: Amergin
Date: 29 Jun 06 - 12:48 AM

Plastic Bullets
Gary Og

In Belfast streets I've heard it said,
They're shooting little children dead,
Taking lives hardly begun,
With plastic bullets in their guns.

chorus.
We won't be kept down easily,
We will not be still,
We will not be kept down easily,
After all you maimed and killed.

Young Carol Ann, just 12 years of age,
Shot down by Brits. in bloody rage,
Wee Julie Livingstone as well,
Fell victim to their, plastic hell.

Chorus.

They tried to drag us from our streets,
By taking lives so young and sweet,
Do they not know, we'll not be beat,
And that violence is their own defeat.

Chorus

They try to make us toe their line,
By using every type of crime,
But, freedom won't be terrorised,
Nor freedom's struggle, criminalised.

Chorus


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