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Luck of the Irish

Songs to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day

By Rasma RaistersPublished 7 months ago 3 min read

St. Patrick’s Day brings out the Irish in everyone even those who are not Irish. It is a day of parades and the wearing of the green. Of leprechauns, luck of the Irish and just having a good time. Here are some songs you might want to include if you are throwing a party on this day.

“It’s a Great Day for the Irish” is an Irish-American song written in 1940 by Roger Edens. He was one of the many musical directors at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studios. The song was included in the film version of the George M. Cohen Broadway show “Little Nellie Kelly” in 1922. It was a starring vehicle for actress Judy Garland, who had Irish roots.

“Whiskey in the Jar” is a traditional Irish song, mentioning the counties of Cork and Kerry. Since the 1950s it has become one of the most widely performed traditional Irish songs. The song became internationally known when performed by the Irish folk band The Dubliners and became their signature song. The song is included on three of their albums from the 1960s. It was turned into a kind of heavy metal song when recorded by Metallica in 1998. That version won a Grammy for Best Hard Rock Performance in 2000.

“The Irish Rover” is an Irish folk song about a sailing ship reaching an unfortunate end. Each version of the song describes the ship well with “twenty-three masts” particularly the version by British Celtic punk band The Pogues.

“Molly Malone” is a song also known as “Cockles and Mussels” or “In Dublin’s Fair City”. The song is set in Dublin, Ireland and became its unofficial anthem.

The main character of the song Molly Malone was commemorated by a statue. The statue was commissioned by Jurys Hotel Group and designed by Jeanne Rynhart and erected to celebrate Dublin’s first millennium in 1988. It is located on Grafton Street.

“The Black Velvet Band” is a traditional folk song collected from singers in Ireland, Australia, England, Canada, and the US. A popular version of this song was recorded by the Irish folk band The Dubliners in 1967. Their version was based on a version sung by traditional English singer Harry Cox.

“The Rose of Tralee” is a 19th-century Irish ballad. The song is about a woman named Mary and because of her beauty was known as The Rose of Tralee. The Rose of Tralee International Festival was inspired by this ballad. The lyrics came from a poem written by Tralee poet William Pembroke Mulchinock under the title “Smile Mary My Darling”. This poem was adapted into a poem titled “The Rose of Tralee” and re-set by Charles William Glover from one of his previous ballads. A version was recorded by American singer and actor Bing Crosby in 1945 and included in his album St Patrick’s Day.

“I’m Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover” is a song dating from 1927. It was written by Mort Dixon with music by Harry M. Woods. The song was revived in 1948 with a most notable version by Art Mooney, topping the charts for three weeks. In modern times the song was most associated with Merrie Melodies cartoons.

“Galway Bay” is the name of two different songs. One is "(My Own Dear) Galway Bay" traditionally more popular and known in the Galway Bay area. The second song is more popular outside of Ireland. The song was composed in London, England by Frank A. Fahy, a native of Kinvara, Co. Galway, on the shores of Galway Bay. The most memorable version is by Irish singer Dolores Keane. A separate song was written by Dr. Arthur Colahan in Leicester in 1947 and popularized by American singer and actor Bing Crosby making it a popular song. The version made it to the top of the charts and was at number one on the UK sheet music sales chart.


About the Creator

Rasma Raisters

My passions are writing and creating poetry. I write for several sites online and have four themed blogs on Wordpress. Please follow me on Twitter.

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