My Favorite Irish Songs
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||Danny Boy||Bing Crosby||3:14||$2.19||View in iTunes|
||Oh! Tis Sweet To Think (feat. Ann Blyth)||Bing Crosby||3:24||$2.19||View in iTunes|
||The Rose of Tralee||Bing Crosby & John Scott Trotter and His Orchestra||3:19||$2.19||View in iTunes|
||Dear Old Donegal||The Jesters, Bing Crosby & Bob Haggart and His Orchestra||2:38||$2.19||View in iTunes|
||McNamara's Band||Bing Crosby||2:42||$2.19||View in iTunes|
||When Irish Eyes Are Smiling||Bing Crosby||3:03||$2.19||View in iTunes|
||Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ral (That's an Irish Lullaby)||Bing Crosby & John Scott Trotter and His Orchestra||2:59||$2.19||View in iTunes|
||How Can You Buy Killarney?||Bing Crosby||3:05||$2.19||View in iTunes|
||Galway Bay||Bing Crosby||3:02||$2.19||View in iTunes|
||St. Patrick's Day Parade||Bing Crosby, The Mellomen & Matty Matlock & His Orchestra||2:08||$2.19||View in iTunes|
If they make a Hallmark card for it, Bing's got an album for it. In fairness, Christmas and St. Patrick's Day are the only two holidays that prompt reissues of Bing Crosby's music, like the budget-priced My Favorite Irish Songs. This disc sells for about half the price of a regular compact disc, which seems fair since it runs about half as long (29-plus minutes). The choices here are good; it's unlikely Bing himself expressed any predilection for these Irish songs over others he'd recorded, so listeners are left to presume these are the favorite Irish songs of the compiler, Bob Zipkin (best not to think about it). These were originally recorded throughout the '40s, many with the John Scott Trotter Orchestra, which always handled Bing's voice in a sympathetic setting. The songs recorded with Trotter are generally deep, thoughtful, and resonant, hovering between sentiment and sadness; these include "The Rose of Tralee," "When Irish Eyes Are Smiling," "Danny Boy," "Galway Bay," and "Too-Ra-Loo-Ra-Loo-Ral (That's an Irish Lullaby)." The disc also features a few boisterous but good-natured songs, bordering at times on parody, like "MacNamara's Band" and "Dear Old Donegal." Compared to the Irish music of true Celtic origin now available, Bing's Irish music has a distinctly American sound to it, with references to swing and put-upon accents that sometimes sound disingenuous. But Bing did play an important role in popularizing Irish music, and many of these songs are still remembered fondly. As with a lot of Bing Crosby budget-priced repackagings, the sound quality shows the limits of its day and liner notes are nonexistent, but that all comes with the savin' o' the green.