The Rare Ould Times
"The Rare Ould Times" is a song composed by Pete St. John in the 1970s for the Dublin City Ramblers. It is sometimes called "Dublin in the Rare Ould Times", "The Rare Old Times", or "The Rare Auld Times".
In the song, the narrator, Sean Dempsey, who comes from Pimlico, a working-class neighbourhood in the Dublin Liberties, recalls his upbringing. He laments the changes that have occurred in the city since his youth, mentioning the loss of Nelson's Pillar, the Metropole ballroom, the "Royal" (Theatre Royal). He dislikes the "new glass cages", the modern office blocks and flats being erected along the quays, and says farewell to Anna Liffey (the River Liffey).
The song was first recorded by the Dublin City Ramblers. It has since been recorded by dozens of artists such as The Dubliners, the Irish Tenors, Paddy Reilly The High Kings, Flogging Molly and Damien Dempsey. It was a number 1 hit in Ireland in 1978 for Danny Doyle.