Playlist for the week of March 18, 2019:
- Star of the County Down by Van Morrison and The Chieftains: I recently discovered this Van Morrison/Chieftains collab album Irish Heartbeat a couple weeks ago and it blew me away. Van Morrison’s vocals over a classic Irish ballad is a perfect match
- Goodbye Mick, Goodbye Pat by The Fenians: Growing up in an Irish Catholic family meant that Irish music was never far. My sisters and cousins did Irish dance, my aunts and uncles would sing Irish drinking songs and most importantly, we were friends with an Irish rock band. The Fenians might be the first concert I ever went to as a toddler on my mom’s lap. As a kid, we would drive down to Peppertree Park in Tustin just to sit on the grass with the other Irish music lovers and listen to the Fenians perform. For me, the Fenians are best seen and heard live, this song is from their live album at the Harp in 1993.
- The Irish Rover by The Pogues f/ The Dubliners: This is the more traditional way to sing Irish Rover and it’s one of my favorite Irish folk songs of all time.
- The Foggy Dew by The Chieftains and Sinead O’Connor: Classic Irish ballad that’s been used by everyone from Connor McGregor to the Dropkick Murphys before they walk on stage. This version is particularly mournful but I think it’s the most powerful in the way that the song builds up to its climax.
- Drunken Lullabies by Flogging Molly: drunken debauchery at its finest and a song I used to have on my “pregame basketball mix”….when I was 13.
- The Irish Rover by Dropkick Murphys: This is actually the first version of Irish Rover I ever heard. Dropkick holds a special place in my heart because they’re one of the first bands I saw live and also one of the first bands I chose to like. Growing up, you listen to what your parents are listening to but this was one of the first instances I can remember seeking out a band that my family didn’t know about.
- Funky Ceili (Birdie’s Song) by Black 47: Shown to me by cousin Nora, this is definitely a different style of Irish rock than I was used to but it still made me feel the same way. Irish rock like this always gives me a nostalgic feeling of a place and a time and I think that’s why I continue to listen to it.
- Tennessee Waltz/Tennessee Mazurka by the Chieftains and Tom Jones: While technically a country song, I think this song highlights the similarities between the two genres (much to my chagrin…)… but Tom Jones over Chieftains music is another perfect match just as Van Morrison was.
- Drink the Night Away by Gaelic Storm: Another track recommended by my cousin, Nora. Upbeat and infectious with lyrics like “Don’t know when we’re coming home, So we’ll drink, and we’ll dance, And we’ll drown our sorrow!”
- Big Strong Man by the Fenians: a classic Irish folk song but it’s one of my favorites performed by the Fenians. As a kid, I loved the call and response aspect of the lyrics and as I got older, I realized how funny the lyrics actually are.
- Drunken Sailor by the Fenians: and last but not least, one of my favorite songs performed by the Fenians. Listening to this all the way through is amazing because it’s the live version and you can hear everyone going ape shit in the back.
Happy Belated St. Patrick’s Day you wild irish rovers!