The Mary Wallopers (IRL)

‘Give Folk Music back to the People’ might be the ideal slogan for the Irish group The Mary Wallopers. From Dundalk in north-eastern Ireland come the central figures, brothers Charles and Andrew Hendy and Sean Mckenna. The Mary Wallopers play the popular classics of Irish and Scots folk music with energy, musicality and loads of humour. Their sources are the repertoires of bands like the Clancy Brothers, the Dubliners and Planxty, from the point of view that folk songs are often songs about people and world history, the big wide story seen in the detail. In an interview in The Guardian, Andrew Hendy says, “We play funny songs and songs about sex and politics – and sad songs, too.” During the pandemic, The Mary Wallopers built up a wide fan base through their on-line concerts. One of their most successful songs is Carl MacDougall and Ron Clark’s Cod Liver Oil & the Orange Juice, which the Scots folk singer Hamish Imlach made popular in the 60s. Hamish Imlach (1941-1996) was a frequent and beloved guest at Tønder Festival in the last decades of the 20th century. The Mary Wallopers put out an album The Mary Wallopers in October 2022. Their only Danish festival appearance in 2023.