all lyrics (c) Emerald Rose 1998-2004 except where noted

Star of the County Down

The tune for "Star of the County Down" has been claimed by both the Scots
and the Irish.  But since the Scots are in fact descendants of ancient Irish
settlers, we can probably lay aside the debate and just enjoy the song!   It's
been a favorite in traditional music circles for a long while, and reached an
even wider audience when Van Morrison recorded it with the Chieftains
some years back.

(trad. Irish)

Near Banbridge town in the County Down one morning last July
Down a Boreen green came a sweet coleen and she smiled as she passed me by
She looked so sweet from her two bare feet to the sheen of her nut-brown hair
Such a coaxing elf, sure I shook myself, for to see I was really there

From Bantry Bay up to Derry Quay and from Galway to Dublin town
No maid I've seen like the brown coleen that I met in the County Down

As she onward sped, sure I scratched my head and I looked with a feeling rare
And I says, says I, to a passer-by: Who's the maid with the nut-brown hair?
He smiled at me and he says, says he: That's the gem of Irelands crown
Young Rosie McCann from the banks of the Bann, she's the star of the County Down


At the harvest fair she'll be surely there, so I'll dress in my Sunday clothes
With my shoes shone bright and my hat cocked right, for a smile from my nut-brown rose
No pipe I'll smoke, no horse I'll yoke, til my plough is a rust-coloured brown
Till a smiling bride by my own fireside, sits the star of the County Down


Brian "Logan" Sullivan--vocals, guitar
Larry Morris--pennywhistle, vocals
Arthur Hinds--vocals, bodhran, guitar
Clyde Gilbert--vocals

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