music The Best Irish Folk Songs  

Ranker Music
1k votes 508 voters 30.3k views 23 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!

1
53 15
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2
66 24
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The Wild Rover The Pogues

3
86 38
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The Fields of Athenry David Arkenstone

4
86 40
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Whiskey in the Jar The Dubliners

5
50 18
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Dirty Old Town The Pogues

6
57 25
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Galway Girl Steve Earle

7
44 18
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The Irish Rover The Dubliners

8
44 25
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Molly Malone Sinéad O'Connor

9
24 9
Star of the County Down is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Irish Folk Songs
bellobard added Star of the County Down Van Morrison, The Chieftains

10
25 11
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Will You Go Lassie Go The Clancy Brothers

11
37 22
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Danny Boy Frank Patterson

12
23 10
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13
16 5
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The Ferryman The Dublin City Ramblers

14
15 8
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Grace Jim McCann

The Best Folk Songs of 2018

15
16 9
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Red is the Rose The Irish Tenors

16
13 7
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17
12 7
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Muirsheen Durkin Foster & Allen

18
14 12
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Lanigan’s Ball Fiddler's Green

19
11 9
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20
17 17
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The Gypsy Rover The Seekers

21
3 4
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JackHodges added A Pair of Brown Eyes The Pogues

22
2 3
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JackHodges added A Pair of Brown Eyes The Pogues

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7 13
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