St. Patrick's Day is fast approaching so this week I'll be posting some Irish related posts along with following the Anne of Green Gables Week and Jane Austen Heroine Week.
This ballad is my latest Irish obsession. I'd heard it before but hearing the version on the newest Celtic Thunder venture Voyage reminded me of how much I love this song. It's a sad song but a very beautiful one!
There is no finer harbour all around can be found,
Where the youngsters each evening go down to the shore,
And the joy bells are ringing for the maid of Culmore.
The first time I saw her she passed me by,
And the next time that I saw her she bid me goodbye,
But the last time I saw her it grieved my heart sore,
For she sailed down Lough (Loch) Foyle and away from Culmore.
If I had the power the storms for to rise,
I'd make the wind blow out and I'd darken the skies,
I'd make the wind blow high and the salt seas to roar,
Till the day that my darling sailed away from Culmore.
To the bad parts of America my love I'll go see (seek),
For it's there I know no-one and no-one knows me,
But if I don't find her I'll return home no more,
Like a pilgrim I'll wander for the maid of Culmore.
|Lough Foyle, County Derry, Northern Ireland|
History: Culmore is about two miles from Derry city in the north of Ireland, where the Foyle river widens into Lough Foyle. It was a departure point for emigrants. The song tells the story of a young man who falls in love with a young lady from Culmore but she soon leaves Ireland. The young man finally decides to go to the wild parts of America to find his darling the Maid of Culmore. The song probably dates from the later 1800's and is considered a Traditional Irish ballad although I couldn't find much info about it online.
|Maps of Lough Foyle & Ireland (the red square indicates where Culmore is located)|
Now let's take a look at some lovely recorded versions of The Maid of Culmore:
Celtic Thunder - This is the version that inspired this post. Celtic Thunder is one of my favorite Irish groups and their new album Voyage is a great compilation of old ballads and catchy new favorites. This version features all five members of the group singing together. I really like this version especially since the song lyrics depict a man singing about the woman he loves. And it has that melancholic feel to the music and in their voices. My only complaint is that the song isn't longer! :)
Cara Dillon - Irish lass Cara Dillon sings a sweet version of the song. This was on her debut album which has just celebrated 10 years. Another of my favorite Irish singers though her super sweet voice took a bit of getting used to. I especially like the videos of her live performances.
Caroline Fraher - I'd never heard of her before but I quiet like her voice. She seems to sing at a lot of private functions.
Piano Version - This young man has quite a few home videos on YouTube and I quite like his version of the song even though the video is a bit shaky
Have you ever heard The Maid of Culmore before?
Which of her video versions is your favorite?
Very Truly Your's,