An unofficial Ireland Euro 2012 anthem starring Pogues frontman Shane MacGowan will be released this week.
The track, by the Cronin brother’s from Irish band The Aftermath, is a tribute to the Republic of Ireland football team who are competing in the European Championships in Poland and Ukraine for the first time in 24 years.
The band has reworked a Dubliners classic, The Rocky Road to Dublin for their song The Rockier Road to Poland.
In order to put the finishing touches to the track a few celebrity friends were called in to help.
One was Nenagh singer Tom Creagh and legendary Pogues front man Shane MacGowan.
Both agreed to take part and recording started in mid-January with The Aftermath and Nenagh accordionist Rachel Ray at Transmission Rooms recording studio in Drumlish, Co Longford.
“We were out the night before the recording, playing pool with Shane and discussing what we should do,” Johnny Cronin said. “Then Shane put David Bowie’s Jean Genie on the jukebox. Listening, he put down his drink, and said, that’s how to do it. So it’s The Dubliners picking up Bowie’s Jean Genie on The Rocky Road to Dublin. It sounds mad but it works.”
The song is about a trip around Ireland before the boys head to Dublin to fly out to Poland only to be stopped because their bags are overweight.
“It’s a comedy song,” Johnny said. “It’s a drinking and friendship song with a football theme.”
Other famous voices on the track include Fr Ted comedian Joe Rooney, Dead 60’s front man Matt McManamon and Duncan Patterson from Anathema.
Legendary trad music piper Mike McGoldrick and a host of Leeds’ Irish finest musicians, including All-Ireland accordion champion Sean Gavaghan, Paddy Flanary and the O’Malley brothers Chris and Kieron, also feature.
The recording was mixed by Ger McDonnell, whose clients include U2 and Manic Street Preachers.
The Rockier Road to Poland is out on download and limited edition CD on Live Transmission Records from Friday, May 11.
The official Republic of Ireland song for Euro 2012 – The Rocky Road to Poland – was released last week. It was recorded in Windmill Lane Studios by musicians Damien Dempsey, Bressie, Danny O’Reilly from the Coronas and The Dubliners.