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A colourised photo of Elizabeth Cronin taken in 1951

Elizabeth (Bess) Cronin, ‘The Queen of Irish Song’

To mark the publication of the second edition of 'The Songs of Elizabeth Cronin Traditional Irish Singer', editor and grandson of Bess Cronin, Dáibhí Ó Cróinín, shares insights into the life and legacy of the iconic singer.

Níl mo shláinte ar fónamh, song / Elizabeth Cronin, singing in Irish

“... since there’s no better time for you to learn it [the old woman remarked] than right now, because it’s said that a person will learn something better before breakfast than at any other time!”

Bess singing at the fireside in Lios Buí, 1952. Photo by George Pickow.

Girleen don't be idle, song / Elizabeth Cronin, singing in English, singing in Irish

“A steady stream of inquiries, however, has served to remind me, from time to time, of the widespread interest that still exists in Bess’s songs and so, at last, I have decided to ‘return to the well’, so to speak, and produce a second, revised and slightly enlarged edition, published by Four Courts Press.”

Dáibhí Ó Cróinín, 2021