“Oblivious”, Mick Blake’s debut album, can be ordered here.
Sean Mac Diarmada (The Pride of Corranmore)
In 2014, I was asked to write a song about Sean MacDiarmada, the Leitrim signatory of the 1916 proclamation.
As I researched this song, it became more and more apparent that MacDiarmada has not received the recognition he deserves for his part in the Rising. He was the main recruiter, organiser and strategist, “the Mind of the Revolution”.
Michael Collins saw him as a central transformative figure, ‘spreading the Fenian gospel’ throughout Ireland and coordinating IRB activities in Britain and the United States.
Perhaps he has been the least celebrated of the seven signatories of the 1916 Proclamation because he was not famous in Dublin artistic circles – Pearse, MacDonagh and Plunkett were established poets, while Ceannt was a gifted musician who founded The Pipers’ Club.
Connolly was a hero of the working classes. Clarke was a renowned republican who had served 15 years in prison for his part in the Fenian Dynamite Campaign.
Hopefully this song will go a little way towards giving MacDiarmada some long overdue recognition.
In his final letter, he wrote –
“Make no lament for me. I die so that the Irish nation might live”.
Therefore, in accordance with his wishes, this is a ballad celebrating his achievements rather than mourning his death.
The only lament required is for the death of the ideals contained in the 1916 Proclamation, and for lack of leaders of the calibre of MacDiarmada and his fellow signatories among our current government.