Irish Christmas Music
I love Irish music a lot; The Chieftains, The Pogues, Celtic Woman, The Corrs, Elvis Costello, Clannad, U2, Enya, Sinead O’Connor, and a newly discovered favorite, Christy Moore. I even have a CD entitled “Irish Drinking Songs for Cats” by Marc Gunn. While my background is Scottish, I feel there must be some Irish ancestry in there somewhere. Then again, we are all Celts.
Irish music makes me happy, it makes me cry and it makes me dance. Even the sad songs lift my spirits, when I hear an Irish harp or bodhran or fiddle I am transported to another place, a better place. I can’t think of any other country’s music that touches me so much, even Scotland.
Irish Christmas Songs
I decided to take a break from presenting single Christmas songs and write one on Irish Christmas songs. The Pogues’ "Fairytale of New York" has become a very popular Christmas song which has been covered by such Irish artists as U2 and Christy Moore. Many Irish artists have recorded there own versions of Christmas carols with an Irish twist; Orla Fallon’s version of "Carol of the Bells" is one of my favorite versions of all time.
Christy Moore was born in 1946, in 2007, “he was named as Ireland's greatest living musician in RTÉ's People of the Year Awards. He has recorded 25 solo albums since 1969. He was also a member of Planxty and Moving Hearts. He is a great protest singer in the tradition of Woody Guthrie, The Clash and Billy Bragg.
This cover version of "Fairytale of New York" is definitely the best cover out there.
Orla Fallon is a former member of Celtic Woman; she plays the harp and often sings in Irish Gaelic. She has recorded 12 albums, including “Orla Fallon’s Celtic Christmas”, “Winter, Fire and Snow: a Celtic Christmas Collection” and “Celtic Woman: a Christmas Celebration”.
Her version of the "Wexford Carol" is quickly becoming my favorite one.
The Pogues were formed in 1982 and broke up in 1996, before reforming in 2001. The lead singer for most of that time has been Shane MacGowan.
Their song, "Fairytale of New York" which has often been voted the best Christmas song of all time, the late Kirsty MacColl is featured on the song.
The Chieftans formed in 1962 and have helped to spread traditional Irish music throughout the world ever since. They play traditional Irish instruments such as the bohrain, the tin whistle, uilleann pipes and the fiddle. Paddy Malone is the group’s founder and leader.
"The Bells of Dublin" is a good representation of their music.
The Corrs are a family band from Dundalk,Ireland. They combine traditional music with pop. Their first major international appearance was at the Summer Olympic Games in 1996.
This version of "O Holy Night" was performed on Good Morning,America. It’s a perfect meld between the traditional and the contemporary.
Do You Like Irish Music as Much as I Do?
Share your personal Irish music favorites, Christmas or not, in the comment box below.