From the recording Six Strings and Coffee Beans

In cart Not available Out of stock

© Sean McCarthy

Mark Clavey – vocals, guitar
Mary Hanover – lead vocals, hammered dulcimer
Rachel Gaither – vocals, fiddle

As handed down by Paddy Reilly... "A song about matchmaking. Years and years ago, apparently Irishmen did not like the idea of getting married. What usually transpired was the matchmaker went around and he got young ladies, 18 to 22 years old, and matched them up with young men 68 to 70 years old... good, nice, wild young fellows... and the match was made. But the young lady always had to have about 60 or 70 acres of good bog-land for her dowry. So the reasoning behind all this was her family thought that the young bride would get the old groom into the marriage bed and kill him off in the first week. But these old guys lived 'til they were about 110 because they were fit from running around and chasing livestock and cattle, and everything like that. And again, the young woman was middle-aged - she had 23 children. And that was the whole of the settle. And your man would be down at the pub until 2:00 or 3:00 in the morning drinking 25 pints of Guinness, and even though he was 104, he would come home at 3:00 in the morning full of the joys of Spring looking for more action. The mind plays great tricks on you after 25 pints of Guinness." To be quite candid, as entertaining as Paddy's introduction is... the song isn't nearly as light-hearted.


In the village of Kilgory there's a maiden young and fair. Her eyes they shine like diamonds, she has long and golden hair. But the countryman comes riding, he rides up to her father's gates, riding on a milk-white stallion, he comes at the strike of eight.

“Step it out, Mary, my fine daughter, step it out, Mary, if you can. Step it out, Mary, my fine daughter, show your legs to the countryman, show your legs to the countryman.”

I have come to court your daughter, Mary of the golden hair. I have gold and I have silver, I have goods beyond compare. I will buy her silks and satin and a gold ring for her hand, I will buy for her a mansion, she'll have servants to command.

“Step it out, Mary, &c

I don't want your gold and silver, I don't want your house and land. I am going with a soldier, I have promised him my hand. But her father spoke up sharply,” You will do as you are told. You'll get married on this Sunday and you'll wear that ring of gold.”

“Step it out, Mary, &c

In the village of Kilgory there's a deep stream flowing by. On her marriage day at midnight she drowned with the soldier boy. In the cottage there is music, you can hear her father say, “Step it out, Mary, my fine daughter, Sunday is your wedding day.”

“Step it out, Mary, &c