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Irish Christmas Music

Updated on December 19, 2015

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

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

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

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

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

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.


Submit a Comment

  • chef-de-jour profile image

    Andrew Spacey 5 years ago from Near Huddersfield, West Yorkshire,UK

    Oh yes, nothing like a drop of Irish to spark the Christmas spirit and get the craich going. Great uplifting rhythms and that bit of Celtic magic - being a drab old Englishman doesn't stop me from wheeling round the floorboards once the fiddles and drums are at it. Votes up.

  • tammyswallow profile image

    Tammy 5 years ago from North Carolina

    Wonderful suggestions! I see some new artists I must check out. I wrote a hub on this and I changed the title temporarily for St. Patrick's Day and it picked up. I LOVE this music, especially the Coors. Excellent!

  • old albion profile image

    Graham Lee 5 years ago from Lancashire. England.

    Brilliant blog! Informative and exciting. Well done from a newbie.

  • Enlydia Listener profile image

    Enlydia Listener 5 years ago from trailer in the country

    Thanks for sharing...I love celtic favorite kind of music. Thanks for the listen.

  • The Blagsmith profile image

    The Blagsmith 6 years ago from Britain

    I just love Irish folk music. I got introduced to it in my late twenties. I remember being depressed once when I went out with a few mates. A band started a jig and I found my feet stamping on the dance floor. It did not matter that I was the only one. Because I did it without care, it only took a few minutes before the floor was filled.

  • Jyoti Patil profile image

    Jyoti Patil 6 years ago from Mumbai

    I love The Pogues!!! beautiful hub, voted up

  • American_Choices profile image

    American_Choices 6 years ago from USA

    Uninvited Writer,

    "Carol of the Bells" is outstanding. Beautiful music, beautiful tribute to songs that are not promoted sufficiently here in the United States. Thank you.

  • Leaderofmany profile image

    Leaderofmany 6 years ago from Back Home in Indiana

    I like Irish Music also, I have a lot of Irish in my hertiage. My grandmother was one-half Irish. She had that so-called "Irish Temper" to boot. Thank you for the Christmas Songs.

  • K9keystrokes profile image

    India Arnold 6 years ago from Northern, California

    My partners mom is from Ireland,(still has a beautiful Irish accent) and a few years ago we ran upon a DVD that actually had a section all about her tiny little hometown, she was thrilled! I may just have to find a string of music within your selection of Irish Christmas CDs for her this year. She would just love these.



  • Daniel Carter profile image

    Daniel Carter 6 years ago from Western US

    What a great hub, Susan. I love Irish music as well. It's the Celt in me, which I'm glad we both share. Always a pleasure to read and listen to your works. :)

  • homesteadbound profile image

    Cindy Murdoch 6 years ago from Texas

    I love Irish music, so this hub was really a treat. This hub really helped me get into the Christmas spirit. You picked out some great videos to go with it too.

  • mathira profile image

    mathira 6 years ago from chennai

    The videos were very fantastic and I had known Ireland only as a place of great scenic beauty ,but you opened my eyes about its beautiful music also.

  • robie2 profile image

    Roberta Kyle 6 years ago from Central New Jersey

    I am really loving these musical hubs of yours UA and this one is really wonderful. I've been a fan of the Chieftains for decades and I love Celtic women. The music is just delightful. The New York Fairytale is new to me but I really enjoyed it--thank for the dose of holiday cheer from the Emerald Isle

  • writer20 profile image

    Joyce Haragsim 6 years ago from Southern Nevada

    Great hub, I too love Irish music. My laptop is to slow for youtube so I know I'm missing out listening.

  • Sally's Trove profile image

    Sherri 6 years ago from Southeastern Pennsylvania

    Beautiful! You are really getting me into the Christmas spirit with your wonderful Hubs on Christmas music. :)

  • Brie Hoffman profile image

    Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan

    I love Irish music, in fact I love everything Irish and I don't have a drop of Irish blood. I even named my son Patrick!

  • Just Ask Susan profile image

    Susan Zutautas 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

    I really enjoyed your hub and all the videos. I love Irish music! Celtic Women are playing at Casino Rama on Dec. 9th and 10th. A Christmas Celebration The Symphony Tour.

    Up and awesome!