The Unicorn

As St. Patrick’s Day is drawing near, I thought this week I would choose a song that was and still is an classic to this day.

The Unicorn was was written and originally recorded by the brilliant poet Shel Silverstein in 1962; it was taken from his best selling book called “Where the Sidewalk Ends”.  It’s the amusing story of how unicorns no longer exist because they missed the boat so to speak - Noah’s ark! 1968, Irish folk group The Irish Rovers recorded their version of the song. It was a big hit worldwide reaching #7 on the U.S. Hot 100 chart and the #5 position in Ireland. The song has sold over 8 million copies.  

I have an amusing story about this song. About eight or nine years ago my husband and I were giving a St. Patrick’s Day performance in London, Ontario at an independent living seniors residence; we have a musical duo called Fit as a Fiddle. A professor of mine from college where I studied music production, came by to hear the show and brought one of the residents, his friend, world renowned record producer Jack Richardson. I had met Jack on a number of occasions so it was a treat to have him in attendance. Before the show began, I was handing out some lyrics in case anyone wished to sing along with The Unicorn. I handed Jack the lyric sheet and he had a good laugh as he said “I produced that recording”. No pressure now I thought. I’ll never forget that moment in time. 

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The Irish Rovers greatly popularized Irish music in Canada. Their music works well with the older adult fitness crowd particularly around this time of year! 

The Irish Rovers had a very successful CBC-TV series for seven years in the seventies that put them into our living rooms so much of their musical repertoire is familiar to many.