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The Story Behind the Songs

Ireland’s Political and Social History
Personal Songs of Life, Love, Loss
Songs of Drink and Adventure

#2 Limerick Rake
An Irish Casanova shows the famous Irish humour on his quest to become the Father of Ireland. Unrepentant, satisfied, and proud, the women of Ireland are grateful for the company of this rake.

#13 Whiskey in the Jar
Likely a 17th century tale celebrating an Irish Robin Hood who stole from the rich (or corrupt) to give to himself, the highwayman is betrayed by his “sportin’ Ginnie” and winds up in jail, dreaming of escape with the help of his brother in the Army. Some think this story the genesis of “The Beggar’s Opera.” Again, the humour of the Irish point of view and love of life and adventure are evident here.

#4 Molly Malone
Dublin’s famous fishmonger is sung about in pubs by Irish rugby players and tourists alike. It is a favourite for sing-alongs as we raise a glass of Guinness. A statue on Grafton Street, referred to locally as “Tart with the Cart”, commemorates Molly, who died young of a fever.


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