The Dalesman's Litany: I learned this from Denis Sabey, one of the founder members of the famed Topic Folk Club in Bradford Yorks. He told me the song was loosely based on an old Yorkshire Dialect poem. The poem described how beggars could he hanged for begging in various Yorkshire towns while the song describes how workers had to slave and toil in these same towns following the Industrial Revolution.
Galtee Mountain Boy: Patsy Holloran from Clonmel was the source of this song. The air is a very common one with a few turns but the song itself I've never heard anywhere else since learning it 13 years ago.
Little Musgrave: I've no information about the source of the words except that I've lost the book but the air is from Nic Jones' version of the ballad which I picked up when he toured Ireland 3 years ago.
Wave up to the Shore: A song written by my brother Barry.
Nancy Spain: In Jersey, Channel Islands in 1968 I heard Barney Rush from Dublin singing this song. He wrote it and he has lots more songs but I can't find them.
Lanigans Ball: This song is said to have been written 1870 for the music hall stage. The song itself can be found in Colm O'Lochlainn first collection while the chorus I use was taken from the singing of Mrs. Elizabeth Cronin of Macroom.
Johnny Jump Up: Jimmy Crowley of Cork taught me this song. Johnny Jump Up was a fine cider once sold in many parts of Cork. It's popularity was due to it being allowed to mature in whiskey casks.
Scariff Martyrs: Sometimes known as "The Bridge of Killaloe" this song is seldom heard outside East Clare. I learned it in John Minogue's Hotel in Tulla and discovered more about the song from a booklet ("A Salute to the Heroes Of East Clare" by Mary P. Maloney) which I obtained from M. Rodgers of Scariff a relative of Alfie Rodgers one of the martyrs. Brad McMahon, Martin Gildea and Alfie Rodgers were wanted men who were captured in Williamstown House where Michael Egan was caretaker. They were taken by boat to the Lakeside Hotel in Killaloe where they were interrogated. At midnight they were taken to the Bridge and without trial. Judge or Jury were shot repeatedly until dead.
Limerick Rake: Leave them as they are. Colm O'Lochlainn first collection.
Boys of Mullabawn: From Colm O'Lochlainn's second collection, it describes a transportation from Mullabawn near Newry in Co. Armagh. Frank Harte of Dublin mentioned to me that he believed that poaching was the crime the boys committed.
Sacco & Vanzetti: From Woody Guthrie's album of same name on Folkways Records (FH 5485A). The album was commissioned by Moses Arch and composed and sung by Woody Guthrie in '46-47. The whole album is concerned with the "trial" and execution of Nicola Sacco and Bartolemeo Vanzetti on Aug. 23rd 1927. Both men were Italian immigrants to the States and both became involved in The Labour Movement. Their efforts to try and better the conditions of the working classes led them to the electric chair. All the songs on this album were published in a booklet by Folkways, 117 West 56th St.. New York City 36.