All of us here at WYMA are either of true Irish ancestry or else were claimed in the Irish spirit by virtue of attending The University of Notre Dame.
Plus I own an Irish Terrier, Renny, the king of all canines.
So today we honor the Irish, whose literature, lore, and certainly music are among the very best in the history of civilization. Everything I love about Ireland comes through in the music - generous spirit, sympathy, humor, hope, ability to process sadness, the pubs and strong sense of community, and a deep love of the landscape and sea. And yes, the voices.
So here are a few of my favorites.
We'll start with a pub performance by the grand traditionalists, the Chieftains, and some friends:
Here's a thoroughly contemporary pop song, still deeply rooted in traditional Irish music, from my favorite Irish lass, Lisa Hannigan, who I will continue to push here at WYMA until everyone who has ever visited this site buys her latest CD Passenger:
The great Van Morrison with a stunning live performance of "Into the Mystic":
I uncovered a fabulous live version of one of my favorite songs of the 80's, "Fisherman's Blues" by the Waterboys, which truly captures the Irish spirit I love so much:
And of course no St. Patrick's Day musical tribute can be without Shane McGowan and the one and only brilliant, besotted and beloved Pogues. Though from London, their post-punk interpretation of traditional Irish music is deservedly revered and legendary. Here's a handful of songs, 14 minutes worth from a 1984 TV show, before they hit it big but when Shane still had it all going on:
To our readers, an Irish toast from WYMA:
May neighbours respect you,
Trouble neglect you,
The angels protect you,
And heaven accept you.