Willie Drennan Ulster Folk Band | Northern Ireland - Everywhere We Go

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Folk: Alternative Folk Folk: British Folk Moods: Type: Lyrical
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Northern Ireland - Everywhere We Go

by Willie Drennan Ulster Folk Band

Fusion of Contemporary and Traditional Ulster Folk
Genre: Folk: Alternative Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Londonderry Air
3:36 $1.28
2. Killaloe (With Vocals)
2:21 $1.28
3. British Champions Evermore
2:21 $1.28
4. Northern Ireland to the Core (Special Windsor Roar)
3:46 $1.28
5. St Patrick’s Day
3:35 $1.28
6. My Aunt Jane
1:51 $1.28
7. Boys of Belfast
3:44 $1.28
8. Ulster Boy
3:25 $1.28
9. Song for Northern Ireland
2:57 $1.28
10. An Ulster Ode to All Europe 2016 (Ode to Joy)
3:12 $1.28
11. Spirit of the Bann
2:33 $1.28
12. Sing along with Our Aunt Jane Everywhere We Go
4:04 $1.28
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Londonderry Air.
I had to give a lot of thought as to which title to use for this track. The Londonderry Air is often mistakenly called Danny Boy as this is one of the several songs that have been set to this ancient air. These include a couple of hymns and a beautiful ballad called Derry Vale. There can be no dispute however that Danny Boy is by far the best known and therefore it is understandable why some people assume it is the name of the tune. And fair play to the Englishman who wrote the lyrics of this poignant, heart-wrenching classic but it doesn’t really have anything at all to do with Northern Ireland: and this is what this album is all about – Northern Ireland.
I also recall that in the early 1970’s some musicians began recording this air and naming it ‘The Derry Air’ and lots of people started to call it by that name. People do this sort of stuff in Northern Ireland. So to be politically correct and all-encompassing I considered calling it the Londonderry/Derry Air: or, the Derry/Londonderry Air: or, the Londonderry/Derry – Derry/Londonderry Air. But even that was never going to work and some folk would still be annoyed and offended that Londonderry came before Derry.
After having given considerable time in consideration of this I then realised that using Derry Air in this album would be inappropriate anyway as this album is all about Northern Ireland competing in the Euro 16 Finals in France and I learned when I was at school that the French also talk about the derry air but it has a totally different meaning. Therefore in respect of the French people and their language it could be confusing and considered distasteful.
So, Londonderry Air it is; which was actually my thought in the first place. While this ancient tune was played throughout Ulster, Ireland and Scotland, it was officially given this name when it was first published in Petrie’s ‘Ancient Music of Ireland’ in 1855. It had been collected and notated by Jane Ross of Limavady, County Londonderry.
This version has a distinct Ulster twist as it incorporates the Lambeg drum.
Words by Willie Drennan.
A common march played by Irish regiments of the British Army since the 19th Century. It would have been a popular tune during World War One. In June 2016, one hundred years after the Battle of the Somme, isn’t it wonderful that today’s battles between European nations are being played out only on the football pitch?
It remains a very popular tune in Northern Ireland today as it was played by the Royal Irish Rangers. Its origins however are in Killaloe, County Limerick. So, if Republic of Ireland fans also want to lay claim to this tune that will be most welcomed. This version includes some vocals. The lyrics may be challenging but once you have learned them you will never regret it. It is sung in the key of Da.
British Champions Evermore
The annual British Home Championships were last played in 1984. Northern Ireland were victorious that year. So, it really doesn’t matter how many goals anyone else scores against us we are most likely to remain British Champions for evermore. Having said that: we do wish former British Home Championship competitors, England and Wales, much success in the 2016 Euros in France. And best wishes also to our neighbours, the Republic of Ireland. And as for Scotland, well … best wishes for success in the 2020 Euros.
Words by Willie Drennan. Set to traditional air: “Jolly Beggarman”.

Northern Ireland to the Core (Special Windsor Roar)
Written and produced by Colin Agnew and the featured lead singer is Davy Sloan. This was a big hit among Northern Ireland fans when it was first released in 2009. This song captures the magic of the fighting spirit of the Northern Irish players of the past and more recent times.

St Patrick’s Day
Another tune used by Irish regiments of the British Army: in particular, it is the regimental march of the Irish Guards. It is also a popular Irish dance tune and so perhaps this is another tune that may also be claimed by our neighbouring football rivals in the Republic of Ireland. They will also claim of course that Patrick is accredited for introducing Christianity to the whole island of Ireland. This is true, but worth pointing out that Patrick spent 6 years as a slave boy in County Antrim: and Down and Armagh was where he was based for his missionary work. So definitely an Ulster man first and foremost: even if he was born over in mainland Britain.
My Aunt Jane
This version of this traditional Northern Ireland street song is for the football fans. Everybody in Northern Ireland has an Aunt Jane or at least a Great Aunt Jane. Don’t they??
Boys of Belfast
A popular fifing tune for the Lambeg Drum. We’re throwing in this rocky version for the boys of Belfast who follow Northern Ireland. Featured lead guitarist here is Sam Davidson.
Ulster Boy
Absolutely nothing to do with football but this is for the female football fans of Northern Ireland - should give them something to contemplate and chatter about. The writer has requested anonymity.
Song for Northern Ireland.
Celebrating the counties and marvellous geographical features of Northern Ireland - as well as its marvellous football team.
Words and Music by Willie Drennan

An Ulster Ode to All Europe 2016 [Ode to Joy by Ludwig Van Beethoven]
Adopted by Council of Europe, which has 47 member states, in 1972. It was later also adopted by the European Union with its 28 member states. We dedicate this Northern Irish version to all 54 nation states which are signed up to EUFA. In other words: to all the countries in Europe that have a football team. Can’t let the politicos grab all the good tunes.
While Beethoven may turn in his grave at the notion of his beautiful composition being played on Lambeg drum and fifes, I suspect he would have been favourable to having it connected to all people in Europe, as opposed to it being claimed by a political entity.
This arrangement by Willie Drennan and Davy Angus features the Ulster Lambeg drum and fifes. And John Trotter on Trombone.
Spirit of the Bann
The River Bann flows right through the core of Northern Ireland. It arises in the foothills of the Mourne Mountains, flows through Lough Neagh and enters the Atlantic Ocean between Portstewart and Castlerock. Five of the six counties of Northern Ireland: Down, Armagh, Tyrone, Londonderry and Antrim enjoy its glorious sight. Tributaries also form close to Fermanagh whose bountiful waters must surely at some point also seep or splash to impact upon the mighty Bann. And if not, water from the Fermanagh clouds certainly do. It therefore takes no great stretch of imagination to connect the Spirit of the Bann to the spirit of the people of Northern Ireland.
Words and music by Willie Drennan.

Sing along with Aunt Jane, everywhere we go.
A medley of tunes for some of the popular songs of Northern Ireland fans [Not Brazil/Steven Davis/ Bouncy/Everywhere We Go]. If you’re not sure of the words consult your Aunt Jane. Special thanks to artisan and Northern Ireland fan, Norman Quinn, for sharing his recording of “Everywhere We Go”, as sung by just about NI fan who attended the game against Hungary at Windsor Park. [https://www.facebook.com/NAQuinnPhotography/]

About Willie Drennan.
Willie Drennan is a traditional musician, storyteller, poet and writer. The Ulster Scots cultural traditions of his native County Antrim are the root source of much of his material. He travelled and worked extensively throughout Europe and North America between 1976 and 1997. He plays, fiddle, flute, mandolin and various drums including the massive Lambeg drum.
Willie’s present band, The Willie Drennan Ulster Folk Band, has emerged out of the Ulster Scots Folk Orchestra which was founded in October 2000.

His most recent achievements are:

Since returning to Northern Ireland, he has produced fourteen CD recordings for the Ulster Scots Folk Orchestra Association.
Created and developed an Ulster-Scots Youth/Schools Programme, 1998- 2009.
Directed and fronted the Ulster Scots Folk Orchestra and associated folk bands in over 800 performances 2001 to 2009.
‘Wee Book’ and accompanying CD published by Ullans Press 2004.
Researched and scripted stage show entitled Fae Lang Syne: the story of Ulster-Scots from ancient times to the present day, told through narration, music, song and dance. Performed at 24 theatres/festivals 2004-2006.
Produced CD recording entitled 'Oor Wee Scuil' – ‘Sangs and Rimes for Weans’ for the Ulster-Scots Primary School Project at Stranmillis University, Belfast 2003.
Recitation of poems for CD recording. Newtownabbey Borough Council's 'Sentry Hill Museum Project' 2003.
Presented several radio shows for BBC Radio Ulster's 'Kist O Wurds' programme 2005-2008.
Presented a series of 8 television shows for BBC Northern Ireland called, 'A Dander with Drennan'.2005-2008. Background music composed/produced by Willie Drennan.
Featured on RTE TV documentary, ‘Cultures of Ulster’ 2005.
Book entitled 'Big Lang Danner' exploring cultural links with South West Scotland. Published by Ullans Press 2007.Created and scripted stage show ‘An Ulster Address to Rabbie Burns’. Performed at 12 theatres/festivals in 2009.
Founded 'The Ulster Folk', a grassroots arts and culture periodical and website, July 2010. Currently editor of this publication.
Recorded CD entitled 'Journey To Orion', by Willie Drennan Wired Up. This album is a new musical direction; fusing trad and roots with rock and blues December 2011.
Recorded CD entitled ‘Roots Revisited’ December 2013.

Venues/ Festivals include:

Toronto Storytelling Festival, Emory University in Atlanta, Cave Run Storytelling Festival in Kentucky, Morehead University, Frankfort Folklife Festival, Flight of the Earls Festival in Rome, Hammersmith Irish Centre, Manchester Irish Festival, Festival at the Edge, Eden Arts Festival, Edinburgh Fringe, Portpatrick Folk Festival, Seacat Storytelling Festival, Wigtown Book Festival, Boyle Arts Festival, National Museum of Ireland, University of Limerick, Cavan All Ireland Fleadh 2011 and 2012, Maiden City Festival, Verbal Arts Centre, Ulster Storytelling Festival, Belfast Waterfront, Belfast Festival at Queens, Belfast Waterfront, Belfast Literary Festival, Belfast Orangefest, Belfast Children’s Festival. Nyah Festival, Cavan. Royal Albert Hall.

Other Activities:

Willie has led over 100 cultural heritage workshops. These workshops have focused on a variety of topics including storytelling, traditional music songs and poetry, the Lambeg drum, and the works of Rabbie Burns.

Willie acted as a tour guide on dozens of week-long bicycle and hiking tours from 1995 to 2007 and many one-off cultural presentations to tourist groups.

He has written and performed five original stories with music for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) 1995-1997

Co-founded and initially coordinated the Fundy Folk Society, Canada 1989. This society developed into the present-day thriving Evergreen Theatre of Nova Scotia.



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