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Did you know only the Swiss eat more chocolate per head than the Irish? IrishCentral Staff. Jun 24, The song is a feast of wild exaggeration. The only elements that have the sense of mundane reality are dates and locations.
The Irish Rover set sail in from Cork. Jimmy's job would last but a few hours. George soon quit school and Will's home became the new home base for the band. Will introduced the group to his manager Les Weinstein who became the band's full-time manager, while Will became the band leader. The Rovers drove to California in , hoping to perform in the folk clubs there. On the way, their car broke down near an Italian restaurant owned by two Irish immigrants in northern California.
The boys were given room and board and an introduction to Jan Brainerd, a booking agent who helped them secure an appearance at The Purple Onion in San Francisco where they played sold-out houses for five months. The group was then booked at other folk clubs across California. The album was successful enough to warrant another album, which included their first hit, which was from a song originally written and recorded in by Shel Silverstein , The Unicorn.
Glen Campbell played guitar on the original recording. After the success of "The Unicorn", Joe returned to the band. Wilcil's accordion has continued to be a signature sound of the band. In the early s, the group adjusted its style and began aiming itself towards the country-rock field.
By the late s, however, the group had reverted to their original Irish Rovers branding. Visits from Shari Lewis and her puppets, including Lamb Chop , were audience favourites. Brothers Will and George Millar co-wrote the majority of their original Irish compositions. The Rovers then continued with another television series on the Global Television Network in conjunction with Ulster Television in Ireland. Although most of their music focuses on the band's Irish roots, in the early s The Irish Rovers recorded an unknown novelty Christmas song written by Randy Brooks.
In , their crossover hit recording of Tom Paxton 's "Wasn't That a Party", which was inspired by the boys' own after-show partying, put them at the top of the charts again. The series was produced for Global Television in conjunction with Ulster Television in Ireland, and was syndicated around the world. The band members became Canadian citizens after Canada's Prime Minister, Pierre Elliott Trudeau , asked them to do so, to officially represent Canada around the world.
With their double album 25th Anniversary Collection in , which featured the backing of The Chieftains and songs written by, amongst others, Randy Bachman , Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance , the band was, once again, officially known as The Irish Rovers, but many fans still refer to them as The Rovers.
Will announced his departure in and has become a successful artist focusing on the Ireland of old as a favourite subject matter. Upon departure, George replaced him as bandleader and hired fellow musicians John Reynolds and Wallace Hood. While the band was on tour in Worcester, Massachusetts in October , Jimmy Ferguson died of a heart attack.
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