Irish Press, May 1990

Ireland's leading ballad group, the Wolfe Tones, spoke today of their upset at being snubbed by left-wing councillors at a civic reception held to honour their 25 years in show business. Labour and Workers Party councillors boycotted the reception hosted by Dublin Lord Mayor Sean Haughey because they objected to the content of songs made famous by the group such as "Broad Black Brimmer", "We're On The One Road" and "A Nation Once Again".

A Workers Party spokesman said today they decided not to go to the reception because the group "popularises pro-IRA songs".And Labour Party councillor Michael O'Halloran said that his group on the city council also decided to protest by staying at home.

"The contents of their songs is highly political - and unfortunately it is a form of politics to which I do not subscribe", he explained.

But Wolfe Tone, Brian Warfield today hit back saying that there was no sectarianism in their songs. He said he could not understand the reaction by some councillors. "There is nothing in our music which could upset anyone. We are simply telling the history of Ireland through songs - many of which we learnt at home when we were growing up in Dublin", he said.

"We feel very insulted by this obvious snub to the group. It was very small minded of these councillors to discriminate against us. We have been singing our songs long before the troublesin the North began - we are not responsible for that", said Mr.Warfield.

However, Cllr. Michael O'Halloran said that he did not think they were a suitable group to be honoured and recalled that during his term as Lord Mayor he cancelled a civic reception for the New York Police band....


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