The Irish Rovers The Unicorn

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The Irish Rovers The Unicorn

The Irish Rovers The Unicorn

Folk Music

This bit of mythology that explains why we no longer have unicorns comes from the mind of Shel Silverstein, author, poet, songwriter, and cartoonist. The lyrics also appeared as a poem in Silverstein’s book Where the Sidewalk Ends. Silverstein recorded and released his version of the song in 1962 on his album Inside Folk Songs. Glen Campbell played lead guitar on the track However, the most popular version was by the Canadian band The Irish Rovers. In 1968, their cover went to #2 on the U.S. Billboard Adult Contemporary Chart, #7 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, and #5 in Ireland..

Over the years, there were numerous covers of the song, including versions by Bill Anderson, Shay Duffin, Robert Goulet, Bob Turner, The Bachelors, the Kidsongs Kids, and “Uncle Bill.” The Unicorn has been a popular song in pubs. And Will Millar of The Irish Rovers opened a pub called The Unicorn in Toronto in 1981.

The Irish Rovers are a group of Irish folk musicians, some of whom live in Canada now. They named themselves after a traditional song called “The Irish Rover.” They formed in Toronto in 1963. They have had a roving group of members, and have been performing for more than 50 years. Heard on the early songs were Will Millar, Jimmy Ferguson, George MIllar, and Joe Millar. The band has also included John Reynolds and Ian Millar. Wilcil McDowell on accordion has been part of the signature sound of the band.

Here are the lyrics to “The Unicorn” by The Irish Rovers:

A long time ago, when the earth was green,
There was more kinds of animals than you’d ever seen;
They’d run around free while the earth was being born,
But the loveliest of all was the Unicorn.

There was green alligators and long-necked geese,
Some humpty-backed camels and some chimpanzees,
Some cats and rats and elephants, but sure as you’re born,
The loveliest of all was the Unicorn.

Now God seen some sinnin’ and it gave Him pain.
And He said, “Stand back, I’m going to make it rain.”
He said, “Hey, brother Noah, I’ll tell you what to do.
Build me a floating zoo.”

And take some of them green alligators and long-necked geese,
Some humpty-backed camels and some chimpanzees,
Some cats and rats and elephants, but sure as you’re born,
Don’t you forget my Unicorn.”

Old Noah was there to answer the call,
He finished up making the Ark just as the rain started fallin’,
He marched in the animals two by two
And he called out as they went through,
“Hey, Lord: I’ve got yer….

Green alligators and long-necked geese,
Some humpty-backed camels and some chimpanzees,
Some cats and rats and elephants, but Lord, I’m so forlorn,
I just can’t see no Unicorn.”

Old Noah looked out into the driving rain,
Them Unicorns was hiding, playing silly games,
Kicking and splashing while the rain was pouring,
Oh, them silly Unicorns.

There was green alligators and long-necked geese,
Some humpty-backed camels and some chimpanzees,
Noah cried, “Close the doors ’cause the rain is pourin’,
And we just can’t wait for no Unicorns.”

The Ark started movin’, it drifted with the tide,
Them Unicorns looked up from the rock and they cried,
And the waters came down and sorta floated them away,
And that’s why you’ll never see a Unicorn, to this very day.

You’ll see green alligators and long-necked geese,
Some humpty-backed camels and some chimpanzees,
Some cats and rats and elephants, but sure as you’re born,
You’re never gonna see no Unicorn.

For another song by Shel Silverstein but a very different sort of artist: “A Boy Named Sue” by Johnny Cash.

Check Out The Groove Pad for More 1960s Music

The Pass the Paisley Groove Pad is a resting stop, a place to┬áchill out and listen to the featured song on the┬ástereo. If the mood strikes you, click on the juke box to access and listen to the 50+ free online songs there. The TV has several channels, with selections updated twice a week. Every now and then, Pass the Paisley hosts an all-request of 1960s and 1970s songs for a Be-In at the juke box in the Groove Pad. Keep on truckin’. Hope you enjoyed “The Unicorn” by The Irish Rovers.

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