Thursday, March 05, 2009

Oh, Crappy Song...

Remember last year when that pub owner banned the song "Danny Boy" from the karaoke machine on St. Patrick's Day? Shaun Clancy, owner of Foley's Pub in New York thought that song was so dreadful and the lyrics so depressing (But if ye come and all the flowers are dying, If I am dead, as dead I well may be, You'll come and find the place where I am lying, And kneel and say an Ave there for me. Par-tay!!!) that it had no place in his establishment's St. Patrick's Day festivities. Fair enough. But Clancy, now having decided that it's better to light a single candle than to curse Danny Boy, has decided rather than ban the dirge, to simply improve it. And that's where you come in.
Clancy is encouraging people – regardless of whether they have any Irish ancestry – to rewrite happier lyrics for the song Danny Boy and email them to Submissions will be judged by a panel of experts, including Malachy McCourt, author of Danny Boy: The Beloved Irish Ballad, who will perform in “THE MCCOURT MEMOIRS: An Evening with Frank, Malachy, Alphie and Michael” at the Irish Arts Center on March 31; CiarĂ¡n Sheehan, star of “A Great Night for the Irish” at Carnegie Hall on March 12; and Kathleen Biggins, host of A Thousand Welcomes, the country’s most influential traditional Irish music program heard on WFUV 90.7 FM in New York.

The entry deadline has been extended until 5 p.m. on Monday, March 9, 2009. The winning entry will be announced during Foley’s World Famous Pre-St. Patrick’s Day Party (7-10 p.m.) on Tues, March 10 and will receive a $500 prize.

“Times are tougher for a lot of people this year, so we’re looking for a little levity. Instead of banning Danny Boy, we’re trying to put a happier ending on what is one of the world’s saddest songs. We invite any fan of Irish music to participate,” said Shaun Clancy, whose month-long ban of Danny Boy last year caused uproar over the meaning of the song and its place in Irish and Irish American culture. In 2008, Clancy offered a free pint of Guinness to patrons who sang happier Irish songs during his Tuesday karaoke nights.
Having lived my whole life as a "Danny Boy" (my father claimed that I was named Danny because "Danny Boy" was John F. Kennedy's favorite song), I'll be getting my entry in. I'll publish my lyrics here in time for you to memorize them before St. Patrick's Day.

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