The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #16424 Message #3545339
Posted By: Jim Carroll
04-Aug-13 - 02:52 AM
Thread Name: Lyr Req: Ar Erin + Erin go Macree
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Ar Erin + Erin go Macree
"around for a long time with no known author to credit!"
I'm pretty sure this is correct.
We recorded this from Clare singer the late Tom Lenihan of Miltown Malbay some thirty years ago - hadn't heard it before, nor have we come across a traditional version of it since.
All the modern renditions appear to be identical to Tom's - though far more mawkishly sung than he ever did (pace of singing basically)
I thought it might have been in Robert J Wright's indispensible 'Irish Emigrant Songs and Ballads', but I can't find it there; though the book is so large and poorly indexed that it still might - will look properly later.
Irish collector, the late Tom Munnelly recorded Tom L. extensively; he didn't include the song on his the cassettes/book collection of Tom's songs, Mount Callan Garland, but if he did record it from him it will be in The Delargy Centre in University College Dublin and it will be fully annotated.
We too recorded Tom Lenihan extensively over twenty years, so we might have some indication of where it came from on the tapes - will check that later too.
Tom got some of his songs from an old 19th century Irish/American songbook entitled (I think) One Thousand and One Irish Songs - it may have come from there; if so, it is possible that The Irish Traditional Music Archive in Merrion Square might have some information - that's the first place I would look anyway.
For me, Tom's rendition makes the song one of the most beautiful of the 'Emigrant lament' songs - brought a lump to the throat immediately I read the mention of its name here - it lifts it way above much of the over-sentimentalised stuff that is to be found in profusion from the emigrations.