Today is Father’s Day here in the U.S., and Jim Adams has chosen a fitting theme for this week’s Song Lyric Sunday: Dad/Father/Barbeque. My contribution is one of my late husband’s favorite songs, “The Old Man,” written by Irish composer Phil Coulter.
The first time we heard “The Old Man” was when John McDermott sang it during an Irish Tenors PBS performance. That performance touched a deep chord within my husband, whose father had passed away when Jerry was just 13. We saw McDermott perform the song live as a solo artist and saw Celtic Thunder’s George Donaldson perform it live and on TV many times. We had several CD’s that included “The Old Man,” and I often came home from work to find Jerry playing one. And no matter how many times Jerry heard the song, it reached him as if it were the first.
You can watch a video of Phil Coulter, himself, performing the song here and George Donaldson (with Coulter conducting the orchestra) here . As far as Jerry was concerned, however, no one could surpass John McDermott’s version. Here’s his Irish Tenors performance. (Lyrics are in the video’s commentary.)