I was looking through Sean’s YouTube favourites, and thinking of posting a couple of tracks by Nina Simone, when I came across something very different.
I was quite touched to see it, as it’s a song I used to sing in the car on long journeys when the children were small – I remembered it from my own childhood – and everyone would join in. It’s also an excellent pub song, I have found … I sing it with a slightly different tune, as I remember it.
I’ve never liked the Wolfe Tones, and Sean had no interest in them, but not many people have recorded this song and it’s the first version that comes up when you search in YouTube.
I find it gratifying that I influenced Sean’s taste in music (as he later influenced mine). An old party piece of mine, ‘The Rocky Road to Dublin’, became Sean’s party piece, as I mention here. Once when there was a crowd of people in his apartment in Cavan, getting ready to go out, someone called the girls into the living room, saying ‘Sean’s going to sing’. He hadn’t had a drink at this point, but he wanted to sing ‘The Rocky Road to Dublin’ for everyone – there’s a recording of it that someone made on her phone. That took a bit of courage, and Sean sang it with gusto. He was using his time.