Irish Rovers, The

The Irish Rovers is a group of Irish musicians which originated in Toronto, Canada. Formed in 1963 and named after the traditional song "The Irish Rover" they are best known for their international television series, contributing to the popularisation of Irish Music in North America, and for the songs "The Unicorn", "Drunken Sailor", "Wasn't That a Party", "The Orange and the Green", "Whiskey on a Sunday", "Lily the Pink" and "The Black Velvet Band".

The primary voices heard in the group's early songs were Will Millar (tenor), Jimmy Ferguson (baritone), George Millar and Joe Millar, and in the last twenty years, also John Reynolds and Ian Millar. Wilcil McDowell's accordion has been a signature sound of the band throughout their more than fifty years.

Founding member George Millar and his cousin Ian are both from Ballymena, Davey Walker from Armagh, Sean O'Driscoll from Cork, Gerry O'Connor from Dundalk, with Morris Crum from Carnlough and percussionist Fred Graham from Belfast. Flute and whistle player Geoffrey Kelly was born in Dumfries, Scotland.

In the 1980s, the group briefly renamed itself The Rovers. During this period, their "Wasn't That a Party" led to crossover success in the country rock genre.

The Irish Rovers have represented Canada at five World Expos, and in 2018 were honoured as one of Ireland's greatest exports at Dublin, Ireland's EPIC The Irish Emigration Museum.

Birth and Death Data: Born 1963

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1959 - 1971

Roles Represented in DAHR: Musical group

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 79 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Decca 120727 8/27/1968 Stop, look, listen Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 120728 8/27/1968 The village of Brambleshire Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 120729 8/27/1968 Our little boy blue Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 120730 8/27/1968 Ally Bally Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 121043 1/9/1969 Lily the pink Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 121044 1/9/1969 Mrs. Crandell's boardinghouse Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 122197 12/29/1969 Rhymes and reasons Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 122256 12/29/1969 Emperors of ice cream Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 122505 2/26/1970 Lament for Molly McGuires Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 122937 7/15/1970 Years may come, years may go Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 122938 7/15/1970 Two little boys Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 123197 10/27/1970 Marika's lullaby Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 123198 10/27/1970 The marvelous toy Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 123594 7/6/1971 Mountain tay Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 123595 7/6/1971 Goodbye Mick and goodbye Pat Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 123596 7/6/1971 Fiddlers green Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 123597 7/6/1971 Bonnie Woodgreen Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca 123610 8/9/1971 You're mine Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca L 11422 3/12/1959 Imagination Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca L 14128 10/10/1966 My old man's a dustman Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca L 14214 10/10/1966 The Irish rover Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca L 14215 10/10/1966 My boy Willie Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca L 14216 10/10/1966 The rattling dog Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca L 14217 10/10/1966 Coulter's candy Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
Decca L 14218 10/10/1966 My old man's a dustman Irish Rovers, The Musical group  
(Results 1-25 of 79 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Irish Rovers, The," accessed November 24, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/322571.

Irish Rovers, The. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved November 24, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/322571.

"Irish Rovers, The." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 24 November 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/322571

Feedback

Send the Editors a message about this record.