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Mick Ryan's Lament

From the Album Two Journeys
September 28, 2010 | Format: MP3

Song Title
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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: September 24, 2010
  • Release Date: September 28, 2010
  • Label: Sugar Hill Records
  • Copyright: (C) 2001 Sugar Hill Records, A Welk Music Group Company
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Duration: 3:20 minutes
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B0044O1LCE
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #762,196 Paid in Songs (See Top 100 Paid in Songs)

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Eusebius TOP 1000 REVIEWER on March 10, 2015
Is it possible for a musician to write a set of lyrics that can be considered classic in his lifetime? Robert Emmet Dunlap did so when he wrote "Mick Ryan's Lament." And then Tim O'Brien recorded it and it and made it his own. The song is the story of an Irish immigrant who comes to America, fights for the Union in the Civil War, and dies at the Little Big Horn fighting for something he hated.

Well my name is Mick Ryan, I'm lyin here still
In a lonely spot near where I was killed
By a red man defending his native land
In the place that they call Little Big Horn

The tune is the Garryowen, an Irish quickstep that was General George Armstrong Custer's 7th Cavalry marching song. These words are chilling. It was the last song played for Custer's men as they left General Terry's column at the Powder River before the battle at the Little Big Horn.

I swear I did not see the irony
When I rode with the Seventh Cavalry
I thought that we fought for the land of the free
When we rode from Fort Lincoln that morning

I have heard other recordings of this song by Sean Brennan, Ray Doyle, Ken O'Malley and even Robert Emmet Dunlap himself, and none of them do it with the same feeling and clarity of emotion that Tim O'Brien does.

And the band they played the Garryowen
Brass was shining, flags a flowin
I swear if I had only known
I'd have wished that I'd died back at Vicksburg

This is the only version to have.
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By D. Miller on February 20, 2013
Verified Purchase
O'Brien didn't write this song, but he executes is perfectly. A song about Custer's Last Stand, it's based on the Celtic tune, "Garrai Eoin" (or "Garryowen"), which was and still is the regimental theme of the U.S. 7th Cavalry. O'Brien gives it a nice Celtic interpretation.
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