Register for news updates
Fill out your e-mail address to receive our newsletter!
I agree to be contacted by The Waterboys and/or Cooking Vinyl for updates, offers and marketing in relation to The Waterboys



The Waterboys' three-track E.P. A SONG FOR ARTHUR'S DAY is a protest release about the Irish alcohol-sponsored marketing event "Arthur's Day".  The event, held in bars throughout Ireland and elsewhere, ostensibly celebrates the birth of Arthur Guinness, founder of the famous beer company.  It began in 2009 on the 250th anniversary of the establishment of Guinness, and has grown every year since.  Part of its proclaimed manifesto is the furtherance of Irish arts and culture.  In reality it is a hugely aggressive, media-dominating promotion campaign aimed at increasing the size of Guinness' market in Ireland - and around the world.  The day itself is a national exercise in binge drinking, cunningly placed during university Freshers' Week when students have money to burn. 

Our argument isn't with drinking or with the advertising of alcohol, each of which in moderation can be components of a healthily functioning society.  Our argument isn't even with alcohol sponsorship of public events.  Our argument is with the specific nature and degree of Arthur's Day.  We made our protest record because we reject the fabrication and imposition of a phoney national holiday; we object to the reckless overpromotion of drinking in a land already blighted by its effects; we reject Arthur's Day's claims to patronisation of the arts which mask its manipulation of both artists and participants; and we object to Arthur's Day's international reinforcement of the "drinking Irish" stereotype. 

The great Irish singer Christy Moore feels something similar. He's released an "Arthur's Day" song too.  You can see hee his and our lyrics below.

Our friend, the Irish film-maker Myles O'Reilly, said this: "There's not a soul in Ireland who is not related or close to someone whose life has been seriously affected by the abuse of alcohol. So how, in a country bruised and battered from alcoholism, do we choose to allow and support a national day for getting drunk? It astonishes me."

You can find more information about how Irish residents and writers are objecting to the imposition and chaos of Arthur's Day here:

Boycott Arthur's Day (Facebook)

Anti Arthur's Day (Twitter)

Huffington Post

Irish Times article

Belfast Telegraph article



We'll show the world we're drinkers
on Arthur's Day
not gentleman or thinkers
on Arthur's Day
we'll puke on our hands, and piss where we stand
and we'll fill the A&E wards
we'll binge and minge, talk shite all night
in Ireland in our hordes
on Arthur's Day

We'll reinforce the stereotype
on Arthur's Day
that the paddy is a guttersnipe
on Arthur's Day
a bestial dogs, just up from the bog
no manners in his head
we'll drink and stink and curse and worse
and soil our sodden beds
on Arthur's Day

We'll leave the streets in tatters
on Arthurs Day
because drink is all that matters
on Arthur's Day
we'll raise a glass, fall on our ass
and never give a damn
or have a bother that we're all just fodder
for an advertising scam
on Arthur's Day


ARTHUR'S DAY Christy Moore

Diageo Diageo have mounted a Crusade
Creating Arthur's Day they've suckered us into their charade
Start 'em off on Alco-Pops tastes just like lemonade
Get 'em into the hit while they're young and none the wiser

Diageo pump the volume up on Arthur's Day
With The Manic Street Preachers, Primal Scream, Tom Jones and David Gray
To flog their alcohol they're revvin the youngsters up for a mighty spree
Twitter and Facebook tellin them where The Mumfords 'r gonna be

Happy Happy Happy Happy Arthur's Day
Its such…. a Happy Clappy Advertisin' Scheme
Drink sensibly they implore us, as their Hosannas sound a never-ending chorus
'n kids get hooked on the fantasies that flash before us

Arthurs Alcoholiday is comin' round again
He's the patron saint of porter canonized by the Advertisin' Men
The medics in the ambulance 'll be workin overtime,
The A&E 'll be like a drunk tank in the firing line
While Diageo goes AWOL at closing time