Cork's Jimmy Crowley pens special song now we can travel around the county

Songwriter Jimmy Crowley writes a weekly column for The Echo every Saturday. This week he shares his new song, The Rebel, after 5km restrictions were lifted in recent days
Cork's Jimmy Crowley pens special song now we can travel around the county

The sun setting over Crosshaven village.

NOT all artists are in favour of this Lockdown caper. I meet coves every other day and they slag me off for not taking to the streets with the other cranks and dissenters.

And after so many restrictions, I’m beginning to, at least, hear them out.

I played Van the Man’s subaltern songs last night — there’s a man who has enough of it; his Covid songs are very funny, typically Van; his voice has somehow rejuvenated; but he’s a conspiracy man, and that’s a hard pill to swallow.

Sometimes, even rebels must take a Government line and I must throw down my subaltern cloak and honestly depose that our Government, with the exception of a few embarrassing hiccups has presented a fairly exemplary stand throughout this desperate time.

Some ministers really impressed me, like Paschal Donoghue. But the medical TV men were infused with negativity and despondency beyond resuscitation; Job’s comforters who railed at every little ray of hope on the horizon that the patient people of Ireland needed. I even heard one doctor say, decrying an essential natural necessity: “We mustn’t get comfortable.”

It just wasn’t in their hearts. The radio each day trades on fear and sensationalism, as sadly, such despondency and negativity seems to be what the people demand in contemporary Ireland. I want to hear people discussing Holy Wells, St Bridget; bees and traditional boats with red sails.

Like all of us, I’m delighted to be allowed to travel around the Rebel County once more. I’ll have some chance now in hearing the cuckoo next week in Cill na Martra or up in Kilworth.

I wrote this little ragtime song on Wednesday downstairs in the kitchen while Eve, my partner, laboured in the library upstairs writing a song about the original Eve, the mountain Mother of humanity. Two songs in one day from one house isn’t bad.

My song was written that I might induce or encourage the folks to consider how marvellous Cork county is and to sing her praises in a new song.


Don’t venture out beyond the fold;

Don’t be tempted, don’t be bold.

You’ll find delights a hundredfold

In The Rebel.

We have Beara Bay, Crosshaven too,

Forget Taiwan and Timbuktu,

Homely hearts are calling you

To The Rebel.

I hear there’s mighty music in the sweet county Clare;

Take the road to Knocknagree,

You’ll find sweet music there.

With a dolly-dowsy by your side;

She might turn out to be your bride.

Take her to the heartlands

Of The Rebel.

Don’t go to Kerry, it’s no good,

Court her in Glenbower Wood

Decent like a Corkman should,

In The Rebel.

I hear there’s mighty women in sweet Limerick Town

But the Belles of Cork ring sweeter

And beat ’em all hands down.

The Texas of sweet Erin’s Isle

No need to cross the county line,

The County Cork will do ya fine,

She’s the Rebel.

The scenes you’ll see will dim your eyes,

Remember there’s a thousand miles

From Blackball Head to Dinish Isle

Round The Rebel.

When the ragtime babas sing ‘The Banks’

Bringing’ tears to my eyes,

And the misty Mother Lee runs by

It’s sweet paradise.

So, hold your patience for a while,

Stay inside the county line;

You’re sure to have a mighty time

In The Rebel.

And when the world is sweet again,

We’ll venture out and venture in;

But you’ll find you’ll have more rapture

In The Rebel.

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