the Wolfe Tones

The Wolfe Tones: The Rights of Man


  • The Rights of Man
    • 1968 - Fontana TL 5462 687 985 LP
  • Side One
    1. The Rights of Man [1] [2] [4]
    2. Raynard The Fox [2] [4]
    3. Long Black Veil [2] [4]
    4. Up The Border [1] [2] [4]
    5. I'm A Rover [3] [4]
    6. Ode To Biddy McGee [1] [2] [4]
  • Side Two
    1. Wrap The Green Flag Around Me [1] [3] [4]
    2. Enniskillen Fusilier [3] [4]
    3. Treat Me Daughter Kindly [3] [4]
    4. Four Strong Winds [1] [2]
    5. Banks of the Sweet Smirla Side [1] [2]
    6. Lagan Love [1] [3]

  • The Wolfe Tones
    • Derek Warfield
    • Brian Warfield
    • Noel Nagle
    • Tommy Byrne

Sleeve Notes

Their songs are of the people and in melodic Dublin tones they tell their own stories of love and peace and war and hate. Sometimes sad, sometimes funny and always entertaining, the Wolfetones — four sparkling young Irishmen — present in this album a showcase of their repertoire that ranges from the plaintive "The rights of man" to the hilarious "The ode to Biddy McGee".

The title song is at least 250 years old, but its message of hope can apply today to any suppressed country or troubled race. Ponder a while on these words:

"This fertile country for seven centuries
Since Strongbow's entry upon our land
Has been kept under with woes unnumbered
And always plundered of the Rights of Man"

Let me stress now that the songs selected here are not all on the theme of human rights. There are Irish songs, American songs, Canadian songs and English songs and the themes vary from a jolly wedding to a tune about atomic warfare! These are just some of the numbers that the Wolfetones have rendered lustily in Mexican market-places and night-clubs, smoke filled folk centres, cheery Irish pubs, the Royal Albert Hall, crowded ballrooms and colourful cattle fairs!

In person, the group consists of DEREK WARFIELD (24) BRIAN WARFIELD (22) TOMMY BYRNE (23) and NOEL NAGLE (22). In fact, it was a balmy August night four years ago in Killarney — of the idyllic lakes and dells — that brought them their first break into the reals of show business. The pubs had closed and the four rollicking musicians with banjos and guitars began to sing some rebel songs right there on the street.

Like the Pied Piper of other times, they quickly gathered a crowd who marched behind them and clapped their hands to the rhythm of the stirring airs. A Canadian visitor mingled with the throng and when eventually the four packed it in for the night, he told them he was a television producer and would they mind if he featured them in a documentary he was shooting the next day? They didn't mind at all … and they've been singing for their supper since — with remarkable success.

The only instrumental featured is "Lagan Love", one of the nicest Irish traditional airs ever recorded.The Wolfetones version is unusual-predominant mandolin sound with fast guitar, banjo and bass backing. The boys have tried it out on audiences from Hollywood to Holycross in Tipperary and it has become a real show-stopper for them.

On the satirical side, the raucous "Up the border" is a gem. You don't have to be a Paddy to see the humour and the ridiculousness of the farcical situation that divides a country.

You are going to enjoy all of the tracks on this album; we just mentioned a few and logged their background just to show you what to expect. The other two LPs from the Wolfetones — " The Foggy Dew" and " Up the Rebels" were tremendous successes and are still selling exceptionally well.

Their only EP — " Teddy Bear's Head" and four singles were big hits and established the four merry minstrels as a recording force.

Sit back then, place the indicator at 33 1/3, swivel the needle and get a listening experience you will want to recapture again and again.


  • Related releases
    1. Also appears on Teddy Bears Head: 1971 - Dolphin DOLM 5005 LP
    2. Also appears on 20 Golden Irish Ballads – Volume One: 1984 - Dolphin DOCX 9007 CASS
    3. Also appears on 20 Golden Irish Ballads – Volume Two: 1984 - Dolphin DOCX 9008 CASS
    4. Also appears on 50 Great Irish Rebel Songs: 2005 - Dolphin DWWT3CD1 CD
      • as "Derek Warfield & The Wolfe Tones"