Galway Girl

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"The Galway Girl"
Single by Mundy and Sharon Shannon
Released April 2008
Format Compact disc/download
Genre Folk
Writer(s) Steve Earle

"Galway Girl" or "The Galway Girl" is a song written by Steve Earle[1] and recorded with Irish musician Sharon Shannon, which was featured on Earle's 2000 album Transcendental Blues.[2]

A cover version of the song by Mundy and Shannon reached number one and became the most downloaded song of 2008 in Ireland, and has gone on to become the eighth highest selling single in Irish chart history.[3]


"Galway Girl" tells the semi-autobiographical story of the singer's reaction to a beautiful black haired blue eyed girl he meets in Galway, Ireland.[1] Local references include Salthill and The Long Walk.

References in popular culture[edit]

"Galway Girl" featured in the 2008 Bulmers cider advertising campaign.

The song appears in the 2007 film P.S. I Love You, where Gerard Butler's character sings the song for Hilary Swank's character. This was also sung by Jeffrey Dean Morgan's character to Swank.

The song featured in the TV series Treme (in episode 9 of the second series, entitled "What Is New Orleans?"). It was performed by Steve Earle (in his role of Harley, a street musician) with Lucia Micarelli and Spider Stacy (of The Pogues) accompanying him on violin and pennywhistle.

Cover version[edit]

Mundy version[edit]

Irish artist Mundy collaborated with Sharon Shannon on a cover of "Galway Girl", a track she had previously performed with Steve Earle. A studio version of the track reached number one on the Irish Singles Chart in April 2008 and remained there for five weeks.[4] It was the biggest-selling download in Ireland in 2008, and was a winning nominee at the 2008 Meteor Awards.[5] The song was the highest-selling single in Ireland in 2008.

Mundy also recorded an Irish language version of the track, entitled "Cailín na Gaillimhe", for Ceol '08, an Irish language compilation record which was released in 2008 to raise money for several Irish charities.

Other versions[edit]

The Elders played this song on their fifth album The Best Crowd We Ever Had.

The comedian Stewart Lee references and performs the song in his 2009 Edinburgh Fringe show and also on his live DVD If You Prefer a Milder Comedian Please Ask for One, released on 11 October 2010.

Celtic Thunder recorded a version on their 2011 album Heritage.

Mike Denver recorded a version on his album The Essential Galway Boy Collection.

Scythian covered the song on their 2012 album It's Not Too Late.

Foster and Allen released a version on 21 October 2013, featuring the vocals of Shayne Ward.[6]

The Fenians recorded this song on their 2007 album "The Best of the Fenians: Couldn't Have Come at a Better Time".

The High Kings recorded a cover of this song on their 2013 album Friends for Life.

Rapalje recorded a cover of this song on their 2012 album "Clubs"

The Punters covered this song on their 2003 album "Fisherman's Blues".

Damien Leith recorded a cover of this song on his 2015 album "Songs From Ireland", featuring Sharon Shannon.


  1. ^ a b "MP3 Podcast with Mundy and Sharon Shannon" (MP3). RTÉ 2fm. Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  2. ^ Ouellette, Dan (2000-08-06). "Steve Earle, Transcendentalist". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  3. ^ "Top 20: The best-selling singles in Irish history". Daily Edge. May 20, 2012. Retrieved October 20, 2013. 
  4. ^ Irish charts
  5. ^ "Stars out for the Meteors". RTÉ. 2008-02-16. Retrieved 2008-02-17. 
  6. ^