Desert Island Folk

Desert Island Folk: (2) Sir Mark Rylance and a Paul Brady/Andy Irvine classic

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Salut! Live's new series draws on the choices made by people of interest to this site, or on what others select from what we may loosely call our sort of music, on BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs.

For the second edition, we turn to the splendid actor, theatrical director and playwright Sir Mark Rylance, whose achievements are numerous enough to fill a few pages of this site but include, notably, a magisterial portrayal of Cromwell in the BBC mini-series Wolf Hall. Among his honours are an Oscar and Bafta award for Best Supporting Actor in Steven Spielberg's Bridge of Spies (2015).

When Sir Mark was interviewed for the programme by Kirsty Young in early 2015, the selection of most specific interest to us was the near-perfect version by Paul Brady and Andy Irvine of Arthur McBride. This is a superior example of many songs in the folk tradition dealing with forced recruitment, the use of roving press gangs to handpick fit young men to serve in the Armed Forces soldiers, the hiring process typically involving lashings of drink and not a little duress.

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Desert Island Folk: (1) did you hear the one about Christy Moore and Tony Capstick?

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Buy this and/or other Christy Moore albums at the Salut! Live Amazon link by clicking anywhere on this caption


Salut! Live likes its series. Some take off, and I cannot begin to explain how gratifying it is to see Cover Story receiving so many hits; others attract little interest and quickly peter out.

Looking back over the archive - a quick scroll down the column on your right opens up Salut! Live's 10-year-old history - I came across a couple of early articles about Christy Moore's appearance on BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs.

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