Jack Quann
Jack Quann

08.26 10 Jan 2020


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The Wolfe Tones say reaching number one in Ireland and the UK with its song, Come out Ye Black and Tans, is "amazing".

The classic rebel song hit the top of the iTunes charts in both countries following a Government decision to postpone a commemoration for the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) in Dublin Castle.

The plan faced major public backlash due to the RICs association with the Black and Tans and the Auxiliaries during the War of Independence - with Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald suggesting: "In no other State would those who facilitated the suppression of national freedom be commemorated by the State".

The Government postponed the event, but said it still wants to go ahead with the ceremony at a later date.

The band has thanked people on Twitter, saying: "We will be donating the proceeds of the success you made by downloading 'Come out ye Black and Tans' to the Peter McVerry Trust who do great work to aid the homeless".

Wolfe Tones singer/songwriter Brian Warfield told Newstalk Breakfast the song's appeal is universal.

"We put it up on the platforms there because the controversy over the thing in Dublin Castle... and people responded to it.

"To our amazement, really, I thought we might get into the charts or something like that - but getting number one both here and in Britain is just amazing".

"Irish folk music and the songs and ballots of Ireland are hugely popular all over the country.

"In England as well, Scotland, Wales - I mean we travel all over the world - the story of Ireland and its songs, it's a unique folklore to Ireland and people love it across the world.

"We go to Holland, Germany, America, Canada - we're hugely popular, the music is hugely popular - they're evergreen."

He also confirmed: "Whatever proceeds come in from that downloading experience will all go to the homeless.

"I nominated Peter McVerry's Trust for the homeless... I wouldn't want the money, I would prefer it to go to them".

Main image: Brian Warfield of the Irish ballad group The Wolfe Tones is seen in Dublin in 2001 | Image: RollingNews.ie


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Brian Warfield Charity Come Out Ye Black And Tans ITunes Charts Newstalk Breakfast Number One Peter McVerry Peter McVerry Trust RIC Commemoration Wolfe Tones

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