RÓISÍN DUBH - sung by Máiréad Ní Mhaonaigh.

DOWN BY THE SALLY GARDENS - sung by Cathy Jordan with Seamie O'Dowd on guitar.

SHE MOVED THROUGH THE FAIR - sung by Moya Brennan, with John Spillane on guitar.


Wow! Like the great Irish Elk that roamed free across ancient Ireland, these three great songs cast an enormous shadow over the songlands of Ireland, here in this shadowy dreamland which is Na Bailéid. We are in Sligo and are going travelling up to Donegal and we are visiting three giant Irish songs. Vast, tragic, epic, slow moving, soaring, ancient, primeval, archetypal, cinematic, incredibly beautiful, sad, heart-broken songs, three of the greatest songs of all time. Ta siad mór, brónach, ársa, uasal, uaigneach, ard, leathan, croí-bhriste. And sung by three of our greatest women singers.

Ah lads, the stuff of dreams; here I am sitting with Moya Brennan and accompanying her on my old Spanish guitar while she sings 'She Moved Through the Fair'. I have loved Moya's music since 'Clannad Live' came into our house in the mid 70's, and it's an almighty great honour for me to play with her, and have the chat, and get her lowdown on that great song. It was also on 'Clannad Live' that I first heard 'The Salley Gardens' that song that Yeats famously overheard an old woman singing in Ballisodare. He first called it "An Old Song Re-Sung" and on Na Bailéid this week we reveal the real musician who set it to the air we all know and love. I love W.B. Yeats. I love The Salley Gardens and Cathy Jordan and Moya Brennan and Seamie O' Dowd on his steel-string guitar. I love Mairéad Ní Mhaonaigh and I love Róisín Dubh. These are all the things I love, gentle reader: Tiúnáiligí isteach an Domhnach beag seo chun as saibhreas ceoil seo a fheiscint agus a chlos,

Buíochas mór do Forefront Productions agus do TG4.

Song Detective Spillane, over and out. Bleachtaire amhrán

Spealáin, amach is amach.


Published on 20th September 2016


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