Cliffs Of Dooneen

Author: unknown, now of the tradition

you may travel far far from your own native home

far away oer the mountains far away oer the foam

but of all the fine places that I’ve ever seen,

theres none to compare with The Cliffs of Dooneen

take a view oer the water fine sights you’ll see there

you’ll see the high rocky slopes on the West coast of Clare

the towns of Kilrush and Kilkee can be seen

from the high rocky slopes at The Cliffs of Dooneen

its a nice place to be on a fine Summer’s day

watching all the wild flowers that ne’er do decay

the hare and lofty pheasant are plain to be seen

making homes for their young round The Cliffs of Dooneen

fare thee well to Dooneen fare thee well for a while

and to all the fine people I’m leaving behind

to the streams and the meadows where late I have been

and the high rocky slopes of The Cliffs of Dooneen

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Here is a song I first heard in 1965.I have heard versions from Andy Rynne, Ann Mulqueen and Mick McGuane.It is a very simple piece of writing yet the combination of its lyric and music have people around the world.I have heard it sung in very different styles too.Margo recorded a “Country and Irish” version whilst Andy Rynne used to sing it in the Sean-Nós style with his finger in his ear and his keks tucked into his Kerouacs.Last night in Enniskillen I gained another verse from Paddy Shannon

“I have traced my own footsteps in search of some gold

thru the dancehalls and cinemas where love stories are told

its there you will see every lad and coleen

going home by the slopes of the cliffs of Doneen”

Dont like this verse, I’ll not be updating my version which I seldom sing now, only when conditions are perfect.Its a temperamental song and cannot be done at will