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Lyr Req: Militant Irish song? / Merry Ploughboy

GUEST,Gwylym1 12 Dec 02 - 05:53 PM
Rapparee 12 Dec 02 - 05:57 PM
Rapparee 12 Dec 02 - 06:01 PM
Gareth 12 Dec 02 - 07:09 PM
Big Tim 13 Dec 02 - 03:40 AM
HuwG 13 Dec 02 - 03:50 AM
GUEST,Ard Mhacha 13 Dec 02 - 07:27 AM
greg stephens 13 Dec 02 - 08:19 AM
Rapparee 13 Dec 02 - 08:58 AM
InOBU 13 Dec 02 - 09:01 AM
greg stephens 13 Dec 02 - 09:04 AM
Keith A of Hertford 13 Dec 02 - 09:19 AM
greg stephens 13 Dec 02 - 09:32 AM
Keith A of Hertford 13 Dec 02 - 09:57 AM
Big Tim 13 Dec 02 - 10:41 AM
Gareth 13 Dec 02 - 01:21 PM
GUEST,Ard Mhacha 13 Dec 02 - 01:38 PM
greg stephens 13 Dec 02 - 01:59 PM
Gareth 13 Dec 02 - 07:39 PM
Big Tim 14 Dec 02 - 01:36 AM
GUEST,Ard Mhacha 14 Dec 02 - 06:49 AM
GUEST,Fuzzworth 18 Jan 13 - 08:58 PM
Brakn 19 Jan 13 - 07:28 PM
GUEST,Big Al whittle 19 Jan 13 - 07:48 PM
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Subject: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: GUEST,Gwylym1
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 05:53 PM

I heard a song a while back while travelling. It was played by a militant Irish band and part of the chorus had "rat tat tat of the tommygun" in it. Sound familiar to anyone?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Rapparee
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 05:57 PM

Perhaps it was "Green in the Green?" That has in the chorus "And his hands they flew/Like lightin' to/The rattle of a thompson gun."


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Rapparee
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 06:01 PM

Check out "The Merry Ploughboy" and "Off to Dublin in the Green" in DT.
The last was written by Dominic Behan....


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Gareth
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 07:09 PM

Militant Irish Band - In the US of A - Hmmm ? They do the singing, others do the dying.

Chrs
" Not for them a judge or jury,
Not for them a trial at all,
Being 'Brit's' means we're guilty,
So we're guilty one and all !"

"Journalists, and armchair patriots,
Sitting by the tele set,
Many miles away from the troubles,
Blaming ould Brittania yet!"

"Sitting in a bar in Boston,
Many miles from the 'Falls,
Sings away the Irish 'patriot',
Safe away from Derry's walls."

"Or perhaps a bar in Dublin,
Here the 'crack' runs so fast,
If the pints were cheap as others dieing,
Ould Ireland united yet at last"

"But don't forget the real ambition,
Ould Ireland free is just a means,
While we are making money,
Drugs, protection and other sceens

(Slowly)
"I remember my old butty Lurch,
Out of work, he joined the mob,
Sent to keep the peace in Ulster
We buried him at Gelligaer Church

Again not my best, but what the hell !!

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Big Tim
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 03:40 AM

As sung in these parts, the verse from "Off to Dublin" or "Green in the Green" is,

I've always hated slavery,
Since the day that I was born,
So I'm off to join the IRA,
And I'm off tomorrow morn,
So we're off to Dublin with the green in the green,
Our helmets glistening in the sun,
And the bayonets flashed and the rifles crashed,
To the echo of a Thompson gun.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: HuwG
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 03:50 AM

Here is the link to Dublin in the Green in the Digitrad.

As you will notice, the last line in the chorus goes, "To the echo of a Thompson gun". However, a Dubliners version I have, goes, "To the rattle of a Thompson gun".


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: GUEST,Ard Mhacha
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 07:27 AM

Gareth, Owen Glendower would have been proud of your butty, fighting in Ireland for the cause of Wales. Ard Mhacha.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: greg stephens
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 08:19 AM

Rapaire's claim that Dominic Behan wrote it seems to me pretty unlikely. Undoubtedly Dominic Behan used his name for the copyright when he recorded it, but this is common practise among folksingers in order to get royalties off folk/public domain/uncertain authorship material. he did the same for the Foggy Dew and many other Irish songs, but that is not the same as claiming authorship. He probably tweaked the words, as most folksingers do.
Just for interest, here is the chorus as Dominic recorded it on his "Rebellion" LP

So I'm off to Dublin in the green in the green
Where the the helmets glitter in the sun
Where the rifles crash and the thunders crash
To the echo of the Thompson guns.

The song goes back a long way, and didnt used to have any IRA connections. The "Merry Ploughboy has been knocking around in England for a long time, with no Irish connections, as a "off to join the army" sort of song. Whether it started in Britain or Ireland I've no idea, but the Dublin/IRA currently popular version is certainly recent, though I would think pre-Dominic Behan.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Rapparee
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 08:58 AM

I took the Dominic Behan assertion off the DT posting.

The Clancy Brothers also recorded it, back in the middle '60s, on (I think -- my LPs are currently in storage) their "Green in the green" album. They sang

"We're off the Dublin in the green, in the green,
Our bayonets glitterin' in the sun
And his hands they flew like lightin' to
The rattle of a Thompson gun."

No mention of helmets, which I don't think the IRA had but the British did. At least, the photos I've seen of those who participated in the 1916 rising (and later) didn't wear helmets.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: InOBU
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 09:01 AM

On the suject of US Irish bands singing Republican songs... I have to say in light of Welsh and Scottish kids from Britain's poverty draft being sent to protect the "rights" of well... cold war interests... it seems a small harm. More to the fact, few Irish American's wrote the songs, I found the same songs being sung in the Republican comunity in the north. Frankly, I would blame the supporters of Margret Thatcher, my self,
But, lets think ahead to a better world, eh?
Cheers
Larry


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: greg stephens
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 09:04 AM

The flashing helmets that Dominic Behan sang about goes back to older versions of the song when miltary gear was a bit fancier than in 1916!


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 09:19 AM

0.8169 - THE PLOUGHBOY (THE WARWICKSHIRE R.H.A.)
Look at this in the DT and decide how much D Behan wrote and how much is just parody.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: greg stephens
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 09:32 AM

I think this song has been recreated in different miltary circles for a long time, and the IRA version predates Behan. For comparison, the chorus from the Waterson's English version:

Hurrah for the khaki and the blue
Helmets glittering in the sun
Bayonets flash like lightning
To the beating of the miltary drum
And no more I will go harvesting
Or gathering the golden corn
Coa I've got the good king's shilling
And I'm off tomorrow morn


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 09:57 AM

The Ploughboy


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Big Tim
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 10:41 AM

Thanks Keith: I always knew, or at least strongly suspected, that it was based on an old folk song, didn't know it was English though. DB probably derived considerable satisfaction from transforming an English army song into an Irish rebel one!
A bit like "All Around My Hat, (I Wear a Three Coloured Ribbon)"?


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Gareth
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 01:21 PM

Ard Mhacha, since when was Glendwr any hero of South Wales ???

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: GUEST,Ard Mhacha
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 01:38 PM

Well he was in good company when I worked in London with Welsh miners who had been deprieved of work by Prime Minister MacMillan, their words not mine," we have been pissed on by the bastards in Westminister for years".
And you would praise the Welsh recruits for doing Westminister`s dirty work.
The Welsh miners were my friends, unlike the gun-toting soldiers, eying you up through their gun sights, this was Ireland my home, put yourself in our place and imagine it was Irish soldiers were putting you up a wall in Cardiff. And regarding dead friends, I would be here all night describing events here. Ard Mhacha.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: greg stephens
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 01:59 PM

Big Tim etc
It's a great song(the IRA version) but i don't believe Dominic Behan wrote it. Like I said, he copyrighted his version, as he did the Foggy Dew amd many other old Irish songs. But he didn't write them. Somebody else reworked an old miltary song into the IRA song, but not Behan. So far as I know,that is, but nobody's come up with anything different yet.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Gareth
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 07:39 PM

TWO points to this post.

First to correct historical myths.

Secondly to try and add some objective thinking to the date of "THe Ploughboy"

1/. Note Ard Mhacha - - Not the English Bastards, exploiting the Welsh, but the Westminster bastards. Different ball game ! The Working Class has always been exploited, in the mines by such well known English as David Davies (of the Ocean Colliery Combine), or such as Powell Duffryn & Co. or the Cambrian Collier Combine.

After all it would be politically inconvenient to admit that Welsh exploited Welsh !

Still it must awkward to walk the streets eyes open for a gun trained on you. No doubt yer average squaddy felt the same feeling.

I can not recall the author of the statement " A bayonet is a weapon with a worker at both ends", but I'll give you a version " A bomb is a weapon with a worker at the receiving end ".

However to return to the question of Glendwr.

A bit of inconveinient history tho' I believe acurate.

Glendwr had a legal dispute with Ruthin,(another Welsh Land owner) Glendwr went to the English Courts for justice. Glendwr stated his case and produced his evidence. Ruthin defended and produced his. Glendwr saught the protection of the Courts. Prior to judgement Glendwr was happy with the legal system. Prior to the judgement Glendwr did not assert that he was the rightfull Prince of Wales.

Th judgement went against Glendwr.

Glendwr appealled, as was his right to the King of England. The King upheld the decision of the Court, who had heard the witnesses.

Glendwr then invented his dubious claim to be rightfull Prince of Wales. Used the Norman fuedal laws to conscript an army in the North ( Interesting ! Historically the Prince of Wales had no right to levy service, this was reserved for the minor Kings in their own need.)

South Wales, and West Wales was occupied, briefly, by Glendwr. Senghynedd, Glamorgan, etc. fought back, Glendwr retreated. He attacked Souh Wales and the March again, and was defeated by the Army of South Wales at Monmouth. Note - Not the English Army.

Also of interest - Senghynedd and Morganwn paid fealty to Edward the Confessor, and Harold was granted the rights of Chase and Hunt in Gwent in 1064.

Sorry I was forgetting, history is inconvenient to political prejudices !!!

2/. Oh and in case you think I'am prejudiced, my Grandmother came from county Cork, and yes I learnt such songs as "The Ploughboy", " Kevin Barry", and " Paddy McGinty's Goat" litterally at her knee.

That included such classic verses of "The Ploughboy" as :-

" Now some men fight for silver,
and some men fight for gold,
but the IRA are fighting for,
The land DeVallera sold"


and the chorus version that I learn't went :-

" And we're all of to Dublin in the Green, in the Green,
Where the rifles glisten in the the sun,
Where the bayonets slash, at the Orange sash,
To the Echo of the Thompson Gun"


Getting back to the Music theme, now Grandmother did not go back to Eire after 1920. Married to a merchant seaman, and dependant upon his allotment to bring up a fammilly she could not afford to. I suspect that she may have learn't some of the words of various songs from fellow Irish in Tiger Bay, she certainly worked as a Barmaid in Cardiff Docks. But this might and I say might, throw some light on the date of the origin of "The Ploughboy".

Gareth


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Big Tim
Date: 14 Dec 02 - 01:36 AM

"Oh citizens, this system is a curse,
An English boss is a monster,
An Irish one even worse"

James Connolly (1868-1916).


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: GUEST,Ard Mhacha
Date: 14 Dec 02 - 06:49 AM

Gareth, We could hammer on on this theme forever, but as this is a musical thread I will state again if Taffy had been in Wales doing a days work instead of walking around our land armed to the teeth,he would have been minding his own business.
Come over as tourists and we will welcome you with open arms, and Tim I agree with you about Irish bosses, but then I can understand the bastard`s accent and bite back. Ard Mhacha.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: GUEST,Fuzzworth
Date: 18 Jan 13 - 08:58 PM

The version I learned as a kid had "the Tans they flew like lightning to the rattle of a Thompson gun." The "tans" were "Black and tans," members of the British constabulary who volunteered to supress the Irish rebellion. There's an entry about them in Wikipedia. The name came from the khaki uniforms they wore.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: Brakn
Date: 19 Jan 13 - 07:28 PM

The Merry Ploughboy I think was number one in the Irish charts in 1966 for the late Dermot O'Brien. It also spent a week in the UK charts.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Militant Irish song?
From: GUEST,Big Al whittle
Date: 19 Jan 13 - 07:48 PM

I first heard that song, Dublin in the Green, sang by Tommy Dempsey - a Birmingham folksinger from County Roscommon. I believe Tommy stood in for Luke in the Dubs, when he was ill on a tour of Australia. A great singer - I think that's on his album for Topic - Green Grow the Laurel.

The song relates pretty clearly to 1916, as I remember. But God alone knows the origins. I would guess an Irish regiment before the separation. Obviously I've heard the Warwickshire RHA version - but its got a celtic feel to it - wouldn't you say...?


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