Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Trad Tuesday - Star of the County Down sung by Van Morrison and the Chieftains


Star of the County Down is a ballad written by Cathal McGarvey (1866-1927) and set to a tune used by several other songs. The folk tune itself is the basis for Ralph Vaughan Williams' Five Variants of Dives and Lazarus.

This song has been sung by many different performers, but I chose Van Morrison backed by the Chieftains. Van Morrison is one of the preeminent Northern Irish singers today, is in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Songwriters Hall of Fame, and has also been knighted. The Chieftains are the foremost traditional group in Ireland today.