What happens when a Dublin-based Irish comedy trio takes it upon themselves to write a song welcoming tourists to Ireland? This pretty irreverent, hilarious and perhaps too close to the bone ditty called “Ireland.”
The Nuala’s first came to my attention at the 1997 Amnesty International Concert, in Dublin, when they sang “Bridget the Nun.” Last year the trio, comprised of Irish writer/comediennes Anne Gildea and Susan Collins, and American musician/actress Maria Tecce, who is originally from Boston, launched their pro marriage equality song “Yes 2 Love,” which racked up the views on Facebook.
As they say themselves their “provocative perspective on everything from Spanx to hors d'oeuvres to global apocalypse has wowed audiences from Singapore to Moate.”
Now the group in back with their hold no punches version of a welcome message from Ireland. Gildea explained in an email to IrishCentral what the song is all about.
“If the Irish Tourist Board, An Bord Fáilte (roughly translated, The Hello-How-Are-You-Board) asked The Nualas to write a song deconstructing Ireland for the prospective tourist, this would be it,” Gildea said.
“A song celebrating everything from Ireland's perchance for the scoops, the craic, and welcoming smiles revealing shocking teeth, to our small-island insularity, corruption, and the ah-shure-export-it-to-England solution to the issue of abortion...amongst many other things.
“However, The Hello-How-Are-You-Board haven't approached The Nualas. Yet.”
While they might not be getting a gig in the tourism industry they certainly win some kind of prize for being a long-running comedy ensemble. Now in their 21st year the group formed in 1995 and had extended runs in London, Dublin and New York.
Gildea told IrishCentral their New York run didn’t run quite smoothly.
“We played The Irish Arts Centre in New York in 2001. It nearly didn't happen because of the events of September 11th that year,” Gildea said. “In the end, the run opened as scheduled on Oct 2, and ended up being extended from three to nine weeks.”
She explained that after this in 2002 the group split up “to do grown-up things like get married, have children and get breast-cancer. They reformed in 2011, in response to how totally miserable everything was in broke Ireland at the time.”
And what did they come back with but an appearance on Ireland's premier chat show, The Late Late, with a song about the trials and tribulations of an Irish Yummy Mummy hit by the banking crash.
These ladies definitely hold no punches!
Here are the lyrics to their latest song, “Ireland”:
Ireland is a lovely place/ We rank top ten as a friendly race
There’s little sun so no melanoma/But it’s nice and warm thanks to Bord na mona
We’re not posh like England or suave like France/But we’ll give you stew and a jiggy dance
There’s a fiddler in a pub always ready to play /’Cause it’s pretty much raining everyday
No tsunamis like Thailand
Come and enjoy the safety of the Emerald Isle
Ireland is a chatty place/We say one thing to your back and one thing to your face
If things get serious we’ll make a joke/And buy another round, that’s why we’re all broke
We’re not sober like Yanks with their Coke Cola/BUT we’ve no TB and we’ve no Ebola
Some people say we like to sup too much/
But at least we’re not boring like the Germans or the Dutch
As long as we’ve a drink we’re smiling
Come and get paralytic in the Emerald Isle
Ireland is a cultural place/We’ve got Marian Keyes and WB Yeats -
Nobody speaks it but we have own language/ We’ve no haut cuisine but we do a good sandwich
The men are ruddy and the women are stout/ But there’s always poetry flowing from our mouths
You’ll always get a ballad, it’s our little treat/ It’s a way to distract from our crooked teeth
Not as pretty as the people in Thailand
Come and see the uglies in the Emerald Isle
Ireland is a celebrity place/We’ve got Bono, Sir Bob and Sinead
We’ve got Graham Norton, Colm Farrell and Liam Neeason/Foster and Allen and a loads of Gleesons
We’ve got Marty Whelan, Anne Doyle and Eileen Dunne/And that fella from The Commitments from Ballymum
Marty Morrissey, Beckett and Diathi O Shea
Jesus Christ it’s like living in LA
More celebrities than Thailand
Come and say the rosary with Dana in the Emerald Isle
Ireland’s a magical destination/You might see a leprechaun on your vacation
We’ve got flying sheep and actual fairies, and battery operated Virgin Marys
We’ve naughty priests and mad extortion You can get anything you want, except an abortion
The best things are free, like the craic and the chat/ but not the water, you’ve to pay for that
More leprechauns than Thailand
Come and hallucinate in the Emerald Isle
We hope we’ve made it sound beguiling
Disclaimer: Bord Failte paid us no money to sing this song.