South Side Irish

Sunday, March 17, 2019

#SOL19: March 17th

      My extended family's claim to fame is our connection to the theme song for the South Side Irish Parade.  My uncle, Tom Walsh, was one of the three men in The Irish Choir who wrote the theme song so many years ago.  Apparently, it happened right at my uncle's kitchen table, back in the same days that the very same table was a part of all of our extended family gatherings.  Their house was where all my Walsh cousins and I have our fondest memories.  And there are a lot of them, cousins AND memories.  In true Irish fashion, the Walshes are a large clan, and we always embrace our South Side history at two major events: St. Patrick's Day and weddings.  Our anthem gets blared at both those events.

      Today, one of my Walsh cousins posted a picture of the 45 of the song.  I used to have the album, as that was the format it was released on so many years ago, and it was well played.  At some point, I "upgraded" to a cassette tape, because record players were getting harder and harder to come by.  This morning, when I went into a drawer to pull out the cassette, I realized how obsolete this format has become, too.  I couldn't play it for my kids if I wanted.  I haven't owned a cassette player for years...  

      Isn't it funny how so many of our memories are tied to things that the current generation will never understand?  They will know this song, as it will be passed down to them.  They will play it on YouTube, though.  They'll never experience having to be careful holding the 45 so that you don't get fingerprints on the vinyl, or dropping the arm slowly so the needle won't scratch it.  They won't understand having to rewind or fast forward a cassette to play it again, or how hard it was to record on a cassette if you did want to catch it from the radio.  They just search and play, and it many cases watch.  But, the song can remain the same.  Traditions and family don't change, even when everything else around it does.  

***D100 people, ask Molly McEldowney about her connection to the song!  


  1. “Traditions Remain the same.” There is comfort in that thought. Now I must listen to that song—on YouTube, of course, but it would be lovely to have a listen to a vinyl version.

  2. This is an excellent post to remind us of the power of traditions. I am sad when my students (or children) don't understand something because it is not relevant today (example: the cassette player, the record player, the telephone with the cord, the phone booth). It is important to keep the traditions aline. Happy St. Patrick's Day!

  3. That's right. "Traditions and family don't change, even when everything else around it does." But our memories continue throughout the generations.