Celtic Geek

by Marc Gunn

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about

Some bands give away 1-3 MP3s to promote their music. I've been doing this long enough to realize that just isn't enough. If you really want to get to know someone's music, you need a good album to listen to, freely, and on repeat. Then, you'll fall in love with it.

That's my philosophy anyway. And since I have 20 studio solo albums to my name, giving away a full album of music is kind of easy to do. The toughest part is picking the songs for said album. I am super pleased to introduce to you my newest compilation–CELTIC GEEK!

This album features 21 tracks from my first 20 albums. You might call this a “Best of Marc Gunn” compilation, except I don't think it has all of my best songs, just most of them.

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released March 29, 2016

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Marc Gunn Birmingham, Alabama

Marc Gunn is a rhythm and folk musician inspired by Celtic culture, science fiction, fantasy, and cats. He breathes new life into the autoharp, which continues to surprise musical veterans and fans a like for it’s unique sound and spirited energy. It’s like a satirical jam session between The Clancy Brothers and Weird Al Yankovic. It’s Celtic music, the traditional and the twisted. ... more

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Track Name: Star of the County Down
Near to Banbridge Town, in the County Down
One morning last July,
Down a boreen green came a sweet colleen,
And she smiled as she passed me by;
Well, she looked so sweet from her two bare feet
To the sheen of her nut-brown hair;
Such a coaxing elf, sure I shook myself
To make sure I was really there.

From Bantry Bay up to Derry Quay,
And from Galway to Dublin town,
No maid I've seen like the sweet colleen
That I met in the County Down.
As she onward sped, sure I shook my head
And I looked with a feeling rare.
Then I said, says I, to a passer-by,
"Who's the maid with the nut-brown hair?"
Well, he smiled at me, and with pride says he,
"That's the gem of old Ireland's crown,
She's young Rosie McCann from the banks of the Bann,
She's the Star of the County Down."

Well I've traveled a bit, but ne'er was hit
Since my roving career began;
Then fair and square I surrendered there
To the charms of young Rose McCann.
I'd a heart to let and no tenant yet
Did I see in shawl or gown,
But in she went and I asked no rent
From the Star of the County Down.

At the harvest fair, I'll be surely there
And I'll dress in my Sunday clothes
With my shoes shone bright, and my hat cocked right
For a smile from my nut-brown Rose.
No pipe I'll smoke, and no horse I'll yoke
Though with rust my plow turns brown,
Till a smiling bride by my own fireside
Sits the Star of the County Down.
Track Name: Don't Go Drinking With Hobbits
Don't go drinking with hobbits.
Sure, you'll have a grand time all night long.
But if you go drinking with hobbits, my friends
You may not want to wake up at all.

They were thoughtful and kind when they invited me to drink,
A lone human among hobbitkind.
They bought me a half, then another and one more
And told stories of days long gone by.
The brew was strong. My glass never empty,
As if time stood still and bare.
But when I awoke the next morning
I felt like Old Smaug had been there.

You may wonder how it all happened.
Well, I'm still wondering what happened too.
I had tea, dinner, and supper.
Quite full, I thought I was through.
But they insisted I come to the Flagon
And drink to the health of new friends.
But when I go there, I met more hobbit friends
And the toasts seemed never to end.

When the sun it rose the next morning,
And I lifted my head from my drool,
There were beer mugs spilled on the tables
And hobbits lying next to their stools.
A young hobbit lass grinned cross the barroom
And nudged each of my new hobbit friends.
Then sometime after second breakfast
We all started drinking again.

I left Hobbiton a few days later.
My head it was swollen and sore.
It felt like a dwarven anvil
After a terrible war.
I don't think I'll ever recover
From the food, the drink, and the cheer.
And I swear I'll never drink with hobbits again
At least, not till I see them next year.
Track Name: Come Take a Trip on My Airship
I love a sailor; the sailor loves me,
And sails ev'ry night to my home.
He's not a sailor that sails o'er the sea,
Or over the wild briny foam;
For he owns and air-ship and sails up on high.
He's just like a bird on the wing,
And when the shadows of evening draw nigh,
He'll sail to my window and sing:

* Come, take a trip in my airship. Come, take a sail ‘mong the stars.
Come, have a ride around Venus. Come, have a spin around Mars.
No one to watch while we're kissing, no one to see while we spoon,
Come take a trip in my airship and we'll visit the man in the moon.

One night, while sailing away from the crowds,
We passed through the milky white way,
Just idly sailing and watching the clouds.
He asked me if I'd name the day.
And right near the dipper, I gave him my heart.
The sun shines on our honeymoon.
We swore from each other we never would part
And teach all the babies this tune
Track Name: The Leprechaun
There's a Leprechaun in me head, and I wish that I were dead
For I don't think he'll e'er let me be.
Oh, he tempts me with his gold, and if I were e'er so bold,
I'd strangle him and leave him in the street.

Well, he says to me, "Ah, you're no Irish Laddie!
And ye call that thing a harp?"
But each time I share the lore that I am learning.
He hides in shame while my friends they chant.

La ta tee, da diddley dee, la ta tee ta tee da
La ta tee, da diddley diddley dai
La ta tee, da diddley dee, la ta tee ta tee da
La ta tee, da diddley diddley dai

There's a leprechaun in my room. He swats me with a broom.
That's the reason I forget the words of this song.
Well, he shows me a four-leaf clover, and before me song is over,
It's buried in a bowl of Lucky Charms.

Ther'es a leprechaun on the floor, and he says that I'm a bore.
He yawns aloud as I sing my song.
He feigns one last breathe stolen, but I see his eyes are open.
And he's watching me with envy deep inside.

There's a leprechaun on a hill, and his gold is buried there.
So I grab him by the neck 'fore he gets away.
The pot's too heavy, he giggles, so I pinch me just a little,
And he thinks he's fooled me as I run away.
Track Name: Wild Mountain Thyme
Oh, the summer time is coming,
And the trees are sweetly blooming,
And the wild mountain thyme
Grows around the blooming heather.

Will you go, lassie, will you go?
And we'll all go together
To pull wild mountain thyme
All around the blooming heather,
Will you go, lassie, go?
I will build my love a bower
By yon clear and crystal fountain,
And all around the bower,
I'll pile flowers from the mountain.

I will roam the country o'er
Through that dark land so dreary;
And all the spoils I find,
I'll bring to my darling dearie.

If my true love, she won't have me,
I will surely find another
To pull wild mountain thyme
All around the blooming heather.

Oh, the summertime is coming
And thre trees are blooming
And the wild mountain thyme
Grows around the blooming heather.
Track Name: Catnipped Kitty
What shall we do with a catnipped kitty
What shall we do with a catnipped kitty
What shall we do with a catnipped kitty
Ear-laye in the morning

Meow meow. Away he pounces.
Meow meow. Away he pounces.
Meow meow. Away he pounces.
Ear-laye in the morning

A few different verses:

Blow some bubbles and watch him chase them

Touch him on the back and watch him jump high
Pry him off your bleeding shoulders

Put him in his cat bed till he’s sober
Put him there again when he jumps out

Put him in the bed of your sleeping father
You should’ve seen your sleeping father
He screamed like your little sister
Your dad jumped up on top of the bed post
Track Name: Johnny Jump Up
I'll tell you a story that happened to me
One day as I went down to Yore by the sea
The sun it was hot and the day it was warm,
Says I a quiet pint wouldn't do me no harm

I went in and I called for a bottle of stout
Says the barman, I'm sorry, all the beer is sold out
Try whiskey or paddy, ten years in the wood
Says I, I'll try cider, I've heard it was good.

Oh never, Oh never, Oh never again
If I live to be a hundred or a hundred and ten
I fell to the ground and I couldn't get up
After drinking a quart of the Johnny Jump Up

After downing the third I went out to the yard
Where I bumped into Brody, the big civic guard
Come here to me boy, don't you know I'm the law?
Well, I up with me fist and I shattered his jaw

He fell to the ground with his knees doubled up
But it wasn't I hit him, 'twas Johnny Jump Up
The next thing I remember down in Cork by the sea
Was a cripple on crutches and says he to me

I'm afraid of me life I'll be hit by a car
Won't you help me across to the Celtic Knot Bar?
After downing a quart of that cider so sweet
He threw down his crutches and danced on his feet

I went up the lee road, a friend for to see
They call it the madhouse in Cork by the Sea
Butl when I got there, sure the truth I will tell,
They had this poor bugger locked up in a cell

Said the guard, testing him, say these words if you can,
"Around the rugged rock the ragged rascal ran"
Tell him I'm not crazy, tell him I'm not mad
It was only a sip of the bottle I had

Well, a man died in the mines by the name of McNabb
They washed him and laid him outside on the slab
And after the parlors measurements did take
His wife brought him home to a bloody fine wake

Twas about 12 o'clock and the beer was high
The corpse sits up and says with a sigh
I can't get to heaven, they won't let me up
Til I bring them a quart of the Johnny Jump Up

So if ever you go down to Cork by the sea
Stay out of the ale house and take it from me
If you want to stay sane don't you dare take a sup
Of that devil drink cider called Johnny Jump Up
Track Name: Close Your Eyes (Demon Lullaby)
Close your eyes and sleep
There are demons in your dreams

Go to sleep my darling
there's a demon underneath your bed

The Demons in your bed
are going to eat you up

Stay in your bed
There are landmines on the floor.
The demons in your bed
are going to eat you up

Sugar and spice and everything nice
Why do you think we say that?
So the demons in your bed
will want to eat you up

You used to have a sister
She wouldn't go to sleep
The demons in her bed
Ate her up

Do not call for your mother;
Who is it you think who let the demons in
to eat you up?

Snakes and Snails and Puppydog tails;
Who can account for the tastes of demons?

Baby don't you cry
or the demons won't wait until you're asleep
before they eat you up

My father sang this song to me
But he slipped and fell on a landmine
And the Demons underneath my bed
Ate him up

That is not a blanket.
Goodnight
Track Name: Monahan's Mudder's Milk
(Won't you) Pour me a glass
Of Monahan's Mudders Milk
We'll wash the mud away.
If you poor me a glass
Of Monahan's Mudders Milk
We'll leave Higgins' damn Moon some day.

I was 12 years old
When my daddy brought me here
With two brothers who loved to laugh,
But 10-20 in this muddy hole
We lost the laughing muscle mold
And my brothers lost their lives to mudders gas.

My daddy raised one fist
To tell the boss he's pissed,
Another to the foreman on third shift,
But when he raised his shovel
To protest his low wage troubles
He was shot down and dumped in a muddy ditch.

Well mudden's all I know
Until I've ‘nough to go
And take my own three boys far from here.
Maybe another place much worse
In this here cold Verse
Till then I drink my Monahan's for cheer.

Pour me, pour me, mudder, mudder, mudder me,
Mudder, mudder me my milk.
Poor me, mudder me, mudder, mudder marry me
Mudder marry me my milk.
Track Name: The Bridge
Was it something I said that made you angry with me,
Made you dig a deep river to keep you from me?
Oh, the water is rushing, come to sweep me away
‘Less I die of sorrow, I will cross it today.

I would build me a bridge a hundred meters long
To see the other side of what I did wrong.
Well you say you don't hate me, but I guess that I'm scared
That with a river between us, you'll no longer care.

I would build a boat, and paddle agaist all sorrow.
And if I sail down the river, I'll be back again tomorrow.
I would face cold death, run and leap to your side.
And if I fall in the river, I'll be warmed by your sight.

I would beg your forgiveness for the pain that I've fed
And I'd find the source of the river you've bled.
Then I'd close the gates of the dam I built there.
And never again will you have anything to fear.

Well I never knew that your tears ran so deep.
But when I've dammed those tears, I will kiss your sweet cheek.
I will hold you close 'till your tears finally cease.
And I'll sing you a lullaby and bring you peace.
Track Name: Lord of the Pounce
I pounced in the morning when the world was begun.
I pounced on the moon and the stars all for fun.
I leaped down from heaven, and I pounced on the earth.
When I pounced my first mouse, I had my birth.

Pounce, pounce, wherever you may be
I am lord of the pounce, said he.
I'll run under feet, wherever you may be.
And I'll leap on you in the pounce, said he.

I pounced on the papyrus of the Egyptians
They wouldn't play so I stole their feather pens
I pounced on the fish caught by James and John
They fed me fish then the pounce went on.

I pounced on the Sabbath, rubbed my head against the lame.
Many people shook their head, said this feline was insane.
I may nap after pouncing, do not think I am gone.
For I just saw a rat, so the pounce goes on.

I and my lady meowed a song across the plain
The birds came down, and we pounced on each of them.
On the bedchamber floor, I laid my carrion.
Then I raced out the door and I pounced again.

I dog jumped down, so I leapt up high.
I have nine lives that will never, never die.
I'll pounce on you though you bark at me
I am the Lord of the Pounce, said he.
Track Name: Kilkelly, Ireland
Kilkelly, Ireland, eighteen and sixty, my dear and loving son John
Your good friend and schoolmaster Pat McNamara so good as to write these words down.
Your brothers have all gone to find work in England, the house is all empty and sad
The crop of potatoes is sorely infected, a third to a half of them bad.
Your sister Bridget and Patrick O’Donnell are going to be married in June.
Your mother says not to work on the railroad and be sure to come on home soon.

Kilkelly, Ireland, eighteen and seventy, my dear and loving son John
Hello to your missus and to your 4 children. May they grow healthy and strong.
Michael has got in a wee bit of trouble, I guess that he never will learn.
Because of the dampness there’s no turf to speak of and now we have nothing to burn.
Bridget is happy, you named a child for her and now she’s got six of her own.
You say you found work, but you don’t say what kind or when you will be coming home.

Kilkelly, Ireland, eighteen and eighty, dear Michael and John, my sons
I’m sorry to give you the very sad news that your dear old mother has gone.
We buried her down at the church in Kilkelly, your brothers and Bridget were there.
You don’t have to worry, she died very quickly. Remember her in your prayers.
And it’s so good to hear that Michael’s returning, with money he’s sure to buy land
For the crop has been poor and the people are selling as fast as they can.

Kilkelly, Ireland, eighteen and ninety, my dear and loving son John
I suppose that I must be close on eighty, it’s thirty years since you’re gone.
Because of all of the money you sent me, I’m still living out on my own.
Michael has built himself a fine house and Bridget’s daughters have grown.
Thank you for sending your family pictures. They’re lovely young women and men.
You say that you might even come for a visit, what joy to see you again.

Kilkelly, Ireland, eighteen and ninety-two, my dear brother John
I’m sorry that I didn’t write sooner to tell you that father is gone.
He was living with Bridget, she says he was happy and healthy down to the end.
Ah, you should have seen him play with the grandchildren of Pat McNamara, your friend.
And we buried him alongside of mother down at the Kilkelly churchyard.
He was a strong and a feisty old man, considering his life was so hard.
And it’s funny the way he kept talking about you. He called for you at the end.
Oh, why don’t you think about coming to visit, what joy to see you again.
Track Name: Celtic Christmas Elf
Ho ho! Merry Christmas with a rat-ta-ta-tum,
The presents we make will bring joy to children.
Santa's smiling and stroking his beard with his thumb
Come celebrate Christmas with me, with me!
Come celebrate Christmas with me!

Twas a fortnight following St. Patrick's Day
When across the thin veil the Leprechauns came
To Shebeg and Sheemore to dance with the fae
To join the fine craic until morning.

Ol' Lucky was sitting and drinking stout brew
When in walked two elves with green hats and red shoes
He smiled and said, “Why! How do you do?
Pull a seat up and drink here with me.”

The larger elf said, “Let me buy you a beer.
T'was a great Paddy's Day from all that I hear!”
The other elf added, “I've a secret to share.Gm
Just listen and the next round's on me.”

Lucky drank his first pint while singing a song.
The second pint came as he was feeling quite strong.
But the shot of hot whiskey, made him feel all wrong.
That's when the elves began to speak.

“Kris Kringle sent us to recruit by ourselves.
But the Keeblers are busy. S.P.E.W.'s freeing house elves.
I guess what we're staying is we've chosen quite well.
Your going to the North Pole with me.”

They dragged him outside. Tied him to a reindeer
To the North Pole they flew to serve a full year.
You Leprechauns take note of Santa's elves and beware
Don't share in the craic of the fae.
Track Name: I'll Tell My Ma
I'll tell my ma when I get home,
The boys won't leave the girls alone
They pull my hair and stole my comb
But that's all right till I go home

She is handsome, she is pretty,
She is the Belle of Belfast city
She is a courtin' one, two, three,
Please won't you tell me who is she

Albert Mooney says he loves her,
All the boys are fightin' for her
Knock at the door and ring at the bell,
Saying oh my true love, are you well

Out she comes as white as snow,
Rrings on her fingers, bells on her toes
Ould Johnny Morrissey says she'll die
If she doesn't get the fella with the roving eye

Let the wind and the rain and the hail blow high
And the snow come travellin' through the sky
She's as sweet as apple pie,
She'll get her own lad by and by

When she gets a lad of her own
She won't tell her ma when she gets home
Let them all come as they will
For it's Albert Mooney she loves still