The Ballad of Patrick Murphy

One hundred and three years ago today, the fisherman Patrick Murphy of Passage West Co. Cork was shot by a local bailiff.  To commemorate the 100th anniversary in 2011, Cork singer/songwriter John Spillane composed this ballad.  At first the song was about hatred and blame, but as Spillane describes, he worked through that in the writing, and in the end the song is about peace and reconciliation.

The Ballad of Patrick Murphy.

Chorus:
They lived beside the river
At the turning of the tide
They lived beside the river
By the river they lived and they died

Patrick Murphy was a fisherman, and a gentleman, and a good man,
In the town of Passage West,
With a wife and seven children,
And he tended to his nets.

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The Banks of Sullane

Thanks to Mary Dillon for offering up The Banks of Sullane as a “banks” song I had missed.  Here is a performance by her Sí Van band mate, Niamh Parsons.

The Banks of Sullane*

It was early on a bright harvest morning,
I strayed by the banks of Sullane
To gaze on such beauties of nature
As grace every woodland and lawn
Oh the prospect was surely enchanting,
As gay lassies in juvenile plume
Promenaded by the banks of that river
That flows by the town of Macroom

I being airy and fond of recreation
To the river(side) I ventured to rove
When weary of my ramblings and roving
I sat myself down by a grove
I sat there some time meditating
Till the sun its bright rays had withdrawn
And a damsel of queenly appearance
Came down by the banks of Sullane

I rose with great joy and admiration
And accosted this damsel most fair
For to me she appeared like Venus
Adorned with jewels so rare
RWere I ruler of France or of Prussia
It’s with me you’d soon wear the crown
And I’d join you in wedlock my darling
You’re the beauty of sweet MasseytownS

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