Aug 06 2010

‘Michael, they have taken you away’

Category: Lyrics,Photos,Quotes About MJ,VideosSeven @ 2:26 pm

The Fields of Athenry

The Fields of Athenry

I have learnt that after parting ways with Prince Abdullah in Bahrain and while living in Ireland in 2006, Michael collaborated with the Caheraggin Village Choir, singing six verses of the ballad “The Fields of Athenry“. Michael was intrigued by the rich storyline, and the verse “Michael, they have taken you away“.

Someone recorded the session and placed it in a bank vault for safekeeping. The news was reported shortly after the singer’s sudden demise in June, 2009. The choir spokesman Kevin Gillane, has revealed that the choir and its trustees have determined that they may hold the entire rights to the recording as technically Jackson was merely a guest on their recording: “We were in the former Sunset Studios recording our album with owner, the late Gerry McGrade, when we were asked to work on doing some backing vocals for material that Mr. Jackson and his people were working on. However, it was during our paid-for time and down time in his recording that we got together to sing “The Fields of Athenry”, so technically, this creates a different issue for the choir and the trustees. That is why we have placed the tapes in the vault”, says Gillane, insisting they do not seek to exploit this situation in their favor.

He says they had known about the recording for three years but were unwilling to record it out of friendship and respect for Jackson. “The Fields of Athenry” was created during the Great Irish Famine (1845-1850), about a fictional man named Michael from near Athenry in County Galway, who has been sentenced to transportation to Botany Bay, Australia, for stealing food for his starving family. The song was written by Pete St. John in the 70’s and is a widely known and popular anthem for Irish sports supporters and fans of Celtic F.C. and has also been adopted in movies.

Obviously Michaels rendition is not available to post but here is the song:

Fields of Athenry – Lyrics

By a lonely prison wall,
I heard a young girl call:
“Michael, they have taken you away,
For you stole Trevelyn’s corn,
So the young might see the morn.
Now a prison ship lies waiting in the bay.”

Low lie the fields of Athenry
Where once we watched the small free birds fly
Our love was on the wing
We had dreams and songs to sing
It’s so lonely round the fields of Athenry.

By a lonely prison wall,
I heard a young man call
“Nothing matters, Mary, when you’re free
Against the famine and the crown,
I rebelled, they cut me down.
Now you must raise our child with dignity.”

Low lie the fields of Athenry
Where once we watched the small free birds fly
Our love was on the wing
We had dreams and songs to sing
It’s so lonely round the fields of Athenry.

By a lonely harbor wall,
She watched the last star fall
As the prison ship sailed out against the sky
For she lived to hope and pray
For her love in Botany Bay
It’s so lonely round the fields of Athenry.

Low lie the fields of Athenry
Where once we watched the small free birds fly
Our love was on the wing
We had dreams and songs to sing
It’s so lonely round the fields of Athenry.

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6 Responses to “‘Michael, they have taken you away’”

  1. Justice4MJJ says:

    That was so beautiful, thank you. I am also so glad that they arent taking advantage of his murder by trying to profit….it makes me think Ireland more of a place I wish he could stay at. I bet him singing it was so angelic, the lyrics are.

  2. klk says:

    I wish Michael would have stayed there where people are not as harsh as the Americans were on our Michael,we might just still have him. Bless you all.

  3. debby says:

    I LOVE THIS, Seven…… One of your finest blogs…. I can picture Michael’s tender heart being at one with the pathos of the story and the children in the song…

    Please post this to my page.. I want people to view it.

    Blessings!

  4. TLS says:

    Hmmm. I think maybe the group should release this song if they can. It would be the one way to hear something new from MJ that Sony wouldn’t profit from. What do other people think about this?

  5. Niamh says:

    Great post! I know the song well, as I am from Galway. I never thought about that line in this context though. interesting that it struck Michael. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Ali says:

    It would be great if they released it, profits to a Michael charity, but they then couldn’t stop others from taking advantage illegally. In a way I’d like it to stay private as it was originally sung, part of Michael’s special time in Ireland.Perhaps the children could have a copy just for themselves.
    On the other hand I’d love to hear it!I agree it’d be lovely to have something thats nothing to do with $ony! Could they do it though with the estate after everyone?they probably couldn’t even say he was on it.it’d be a word of mouth fan ‘secret’! that sounds good!

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