People often ask, "when did 'The Troubles' begin?" Well how far do you want to go back? To the arrival of the Anglo Normans in the twelfth century perhaps or well beyond to earlier less documented "Comings?"
In 4th and 5th century Ulster there were stories of the North’s most powerful tribe, the Ulaidh, who held Ulaidh’s tir (land) "Ul’s tir" having differences of opinion with the Dal Fiatach (the true Ulaidh).
It was said that time eventually blended the Newcomer with the Native "becoming more Irish than the Irish themselves." The Ulster Plantation in the seventeenth century, however, brought an extra divisive dimension into the mix, a rival Christian Religion, from the rival Island of Britain vying for the same earthly space on this island. This has been part origin of our present "Troubles."
The 1916 Rebellion in Dublin led to Irish Independence from British Rule but Ulster Protestants who had arrived in the seventeenth century to bolster British Rule were prepared to fight and die to maintain that link. Ulster Catholics now in the minority in the new Six County State demanded equality through the Civil Rights Movement in the late Sixties. When they felt their call was falling on deaf ears, and that the Six County State seemed irreformable, a significant number seemed prepared to support the militant Provisional IRA in their quest for a United Ireland.
History can relay the facts but sometimes it takes a song to sing the feelings Such feelings when ignored can be all too easily repeated by another generation. Most of these songs were written by Tommy Sands, inspired by events and people from both sides of the conflict between 1969 and 1998 and many have never before been recorded or available. These are songs arising out of "The Troubles." Songs of lamentation, inspiration and celebration.