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The Meaning Behind The Song: The Auld Triangle by Dropkick Murphys


The Meaning Behind The Song: The Auld Triangle by Dropkick Murphys

The Auld Triangle is a well-known song written by Brendan Behan, an Irish poet, author, and playwright. The song gained further popularity when it was performed by the Irish-American punk band, Dropkick Murphys. While The Auld Triangle may seem like a simple and catchy tune, it carries a deeper meaning rooted in Irish culture and history.

The song tells the story of prisoners in the Mountjoy Prison in Dublin, Ireland, during the 1950s. The lyrics express the monotony and despair faced by these inmates, who long for their freedom and the company of loved ones. The “auld triangle” mentioned in the song refers to the sound made by the prison guard as he strikes a triangle to mark the passing hours or calling prisoners to various activities.

Frequently Asked Questions about The Auld Triangle

1. Who wrote The Auld Triangle?

The Auld Triangle was written by Brendan Behan, an Irish poet, author, and playwright. He composed the song while serving time in Mountjoy Prison.

2. Why is The Auld Triangle significant?

The significance of The Auld Triangle lies in its portrayal of the hardships faced by prisoners and the longing for freedom. It has become a symbol of Irish resilience and the power of music to convey deep emotions.

3. When was The Auld Triangle first performed?

The Auld Triangle was first performed in 1952 as part of Behan’s play “The Quare Fellow,” which revolved around the lives of inmates in Mountjoy Prison. It later gained popularity when it was sung by various artists, including The Dubliners and Dropkick Murphys.

4. What is the inspiration behind The Auld Triangle?

The inspiration behind The Auld Triangle can be traced back to Brendan Behan’s personal experience in prison. Behan himself was imprisoned for his involvement in the Irish Republican Army and drew from his own observations and emotions while writing the song.

5. What does the auld triangle symbolize in the song?

In the context of the song, the auld triangle symbolizes the passing of time and the monotonous routines of prison life. The striking of the triangle acts as a constant reminder to the prisoners of their captivity and their longing for freedom.

6. Are there any notable covers or renditions of The Auld Triangle?

Yes, The Auld Triangle has been covered by various artists over the years. Notable renditions include versions by The Dubliners, Sinéad O’Connor, and of course, Dropkick Murphys, whose energetic performance brought the song to a wider audience.

7. How has The Auld Triangle become popular outside of Ireland?

The popularity of The Auld Triangle extends beyond Ireland due to its powerful themes and heartfelt lyrics. It has resonated with people from various backgrounds who can relate to the longing for freedom and the universal desire to escape from confinement.

8. What role does The Auld Triangle play in Irish music history?

The Auld Triangle holds a significant place in Irish music history as a representation of traditional Irish folk music fused with punk influences. It highlights the power of music in storytelling and preserving cultural heritage.

9. Are there any hidden meanings in the lyrics of The Auld Triangle?

While the lyrics of The Auld Triangle may appear straightforward, they carry deeper meanings related to the struggle for freedom, the human spirit, and the resilience of individuals facing adversity. The repetition of certain phrases adds emphasis to these underlying messages.

10. What impact has The Auld Triangle had on contemporary music?

The Auld Triangle has inspired and influenced numerous musicians and bands, particularly in the punk and folk genres. Its fusion of traditional Irish music with a rebellious spirit has had a lasting impact on contemporary music, further intertwining the worlds of punk and Irish culture.

11. Can The Auld Triangle be seen as a political song?

While The Auld Triangle touches on themes related to imprisonment and freedom, it is primarily a reflection of the human experience rather than a politically charged song. Its power lies in its ability to resonate with individuals from different backgrounds and experiences.

12. What emotions does The Auld Triangle evoke in listeners?

The Auld Triangle evokes a range of emotions in listeners, including empathy, nostalgia, and a sense of longing. Through its poignant lyrics and melodies, it transports listeners to the world of the prisoners, allowing them to connect with their emotions on a deep and personal level.

In conclusion, The Auld Triangle by Dropkick Murphys is a song that beautifully captures the longing for freedom and the struggles faced by prisoners. Its meaningful lyrics and catchy melody have resonated with listeners worldwide, making it a notable piece in Irish music history.

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About Warren Barrett

Warren has spent nearly half a century (now that's a long time!) as an ink-stained wretch writing for music magazines and websites and has no plans on giving up soon.

He is curious about all types of music and instruments apart from any genre with 'Urban' in the title. He's also not so keen on Plastic Potted Plants, Reality TV, and any movies with Kevin Costner in them.

He lives in Delaware with his wife Wendy and lots of great memories...

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