Tommy Makem and the Clancy Brothers were among the first bands of the 1960s folk revival to record The Butcher Boy and put it before a new audience.
Died for Love
Lyrics and chords
This version is from their session with Pete Seeger, recorded in the early 1960s with Tommy Makem on lead vocals and Liam Clancy on guitar.
Sinead O’Connor recorded this beautiful version with a simple but effective arrangement. She misses out several of the verses but the song meaning comes across clearly.
This haunting version by The Ludlows Ballad Group was recorded in 1965 but its quality is timeless.
To see how the song became transformed as it moved to America, take a look at this Elvis Costello recording of an Appalachian version of The Butcher Boy.
Maureen Hegarty recorded this fine version with Colum Arbuckle accompanying her on guitar.
Tommy Makem recorded the song again during his solo career after separating from The Clancy Brothers.