Music

The Best Irish Folk Songs 

Ranker Music
Updated November 4, 2019 4.1k votes 1.6k voters 104.8k views 28 items

Some of the best Irish folk songs celebrate all that is great about Ireland and its rich culture. Good Irish songs tell colorful stories, filled with tales of drinking, carousing, and sometimes tragedy. They are lively, and they are fun to belt out. This Irish folk songs list includes all the rousing classics, and some mournful ballads as well.

When it comes to well-known Irish traditional folk music, the song “Whiskey in the Jar” is perhaps the most popular of all. This song is about an Irish bandit who is betrayed by the woman he loves. The old song has been performed folk-style by groups like The Dubliners, and even by mainstream rock bands, including Metallica and Thin Lizzy. Other famous Irish folk songs include “Danny Boy,” “The Gypsy Rover,” “Rocky Road to Dublin,” and “The Fields of Athenry” – a folk ballad about an Irishman forced to leave for Australia after stealing food to feed his starving family during the Great Irish Famine of the mid 1800s. Go to any pub or sporting event in Ireland and you’ll likely hear this song.

What is your favorite among these top Irish folk songs? Be sure to watch the videos and sing along. Then vote your personal picks up to the top of the list!

list ordered by
1
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The Dubliners
2
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David Arkenstone
3
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4
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The Pogues
5
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Steve Earle
6
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The Dubliners
7
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The Pogues
8
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Folk Melody added Dave Giummo
9
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Sinéad O'Connor
10
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Frank Patterson
11
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Jim McCann
12
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bellobard added Van Morrison, The Chieftains
13
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14
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The Clancy Brothers
15
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The Irish Tenors
16
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JohnPrine added
17
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The High Kings
18
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JohnPrine added
19
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JackHodges added The Pogues
20
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The Dublin City Ramblers
21
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The Seekers
22
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23
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24
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Finbal Furey
25
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Fiddler's Green