The Ploughboy

Record Tracklist

  1. The Ploughboy -:-- / 4:03
This song came to me in it’s entirety on a flight from Shannon to New York as I was returning from the funeral of my grandfather, John Wall. Famous for his singing and storytelling, he was the inspiration for my interest in Irish music. Raised in rural County Waterford, he attained only a third grade education and lived a hard life as a ploughboy and farmhand raising six children on his own after my grandmother died of tuberculosis. Despite the less than easy lot handed to him he was wisest, happiest and most content man I have ever met. I’ve tried as best I could to capture his story and his spirit in this song.


On a clam April’s eve, I can still see him there
As he plowed the sweet earth in the fresh springtime air.
The black earth below him, the blue sky above
As he plowed his neat furrows and sang about love.For I’ll sing you a song and I’ll tell you a story
Let life flow around you without any worry
Show love to all people wherever you roam
I’ll plow one more acre then I’m going home.

There Bridget would meet him on a fine summer’s day
And they’d talk about life as he plowed away.
Their dreams just beginning when Bridget passed on,
Her lovely young ploughboy he just carried on.

He raised his six children and tended the land,
Made the most out of life with whatever was at hand.
Never looking back as he pushed on each day,
Straight ahead to the horizon in the true ploughboy’s way.

By the time that I knew him, his labors were done,
And we’d walk through the fields in the warm summer’s sun.
His stories were magic, his song’s pure delight,
God I miss his warm smile and his bright shining light.

He’s gone now the ploughboy, the last of his kind,
But his spirit lives on in my heart and my mind.
He gave me my song and I’ll sing it each day,
As I move straight to the horizon in the true ploughboy’s way.