The Weekday Ramble is a daily dose of sports, music, culture, and more from Rambling On founder Erik Ritland. For more information check us out on Reddit, Twitter, Facebook, or at our website.
Tuesday March 17, 2015
Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone! Here are three songs to help get you in the mood.
Give Ireland Back to the Irish – Paul McCartney
Probably my favorite Ireland themed song. McCartney absolutely kicks ass on this spot-on protest song. John Lennon was more known for his protest material but “Give Ireland Back to the Irish” blows all of his heavy-handed political songs out of the water, both musically and as far as fairness and clarity of the message. My best piece of evidence is Lennon’s terrible, cliché-ridden homage to Ireland from the same time, “Luck of the Irish.” Though I admit that without Yoko’s part it’s a decent Dylan-y thing.
Danny Boy – Johnny Cash
Every bar has the old guy that sings this song every St. Patrick’s Day, right? Or was it just the Irish bar I used to frequent? Anyway, going an entire March 17 without listening to it is tantamount to treason. This beautiful version from Johnny Cash is prefaced by a cool story from one of the best narrative voices of all time. This version kills the overdone version on his Rubin produced American IV.
Top O’ the Morning to Ya – House of Pain
Surprisingly the only rapper to use the Irish gimmick, Everlast and his band practically own St. Patrick’s Day musically (I even call the holiday “House of Pain Day”). Sure, every bar is obliged to play “Jump Around” will be played several times at ever bar today, but “Top O’ the Mornin’ to Ya” is not only more ethnic but it’s also funnier. Here are some classic lines:
If you can't get with it, you'll wind up sweatin' it
Then you'll get a beatin' just like an egg
It's so hard to run when you've got a broken leg
The Irish style, the Celtic jazz
No one has it, just us that's it
If you try to take it, I got a big shileighly
I don't have dreads cause I shave my head daily
You call me a skin head, I call you a pin head
Yo, where you been man, just like the tin man
You got no heart
So let me kick it, cause I can make a wicked
Noise like a cricket
Rubbin' his legs, my rhymes are like eggs
I'll keep layin' 'em, I'll keep sayin' 'em
But we're not fancy, Ron and Nancy
So just say no, but I say go
Straight to hell, I kiss and tell
So if you're a ho, all my friends know
What you gotta say, let's hit the hay
And have no delay, and yo, by the way
Top o' the mornin' to ya
…and those are only the highlights. Happy House of Pain Day, everyone.
Erik Ritland is a writer and musician from St. Paul, Minnesota. His blog and podcast Rambling On features commentary on music, sports, culture, and more. He is also a contributor for Minnesota culture blog Curious North. Support Erik's music via his Patreon account, reach him via email, or find him on Facebook and Twitter.