Music For St. Patrick’s Day

Today is a great day to listen to Irish music, given it’s St. Patrick’s Day, so I thought I’d share with you a few of my favorite Irish or Irish-related tunes:

  • The Chieftains, who just rock, have collaborated with many, many other famous groups over the years, producing a massive, massive body of work. Here’s the Foggy Dew, with Sinead O’Connor, if you want a slow sad piece, and the Rocky Road to Dublin, with the Rolling Stones, if you want a faster, more upbeat tune.
  • The Dubliners, whose version of Whiskey in the Jar I’ve always loved. It’s the story of a highwayman betrayed by a woman, and you’ve probably heard the Metallica version. Which is pretty good, don’t get me wrong, but you can’t really beat the traditional version.
  • Captain Tractor, a more contemporary group, did a pretty awesome version of Dublin Lullabye, which is perfect if you’re feeling feisty today. The lyrics are pretty much "We’re gonna drink and fight and drink and fight and drink and fight some more!" and it has some rude stuff and swearing in it.
  • U2, of course, did Sunday Bloody Sunday, which is about the Irish troubles.
  • Elton John is English, but his "Made in England" CD featured a very sad and pretty song called Belfast about the Troubles. There’s a lovely orchestral introduction, so don’t be surprised when the lyrics don’t start for a while.
  •  The Corrs are an Irish folk-rock group and I absolutely love two of their collaborations with other Irish folks: I Know My Love with the Chieftains and When the Stars Go Blue with Bono.
  • And finally, a few samples from groups I’m less familiar with (might be some cursing here, too): Flogging Molly, the Dropkick Murphys and the Boomtown Rats.