I first heard or perhaps it is better to say, saw I'll tell me ma
in the playgrounds of my primary school, St. Stephen's Junior School
, Worcester, where it was used by the girls as a skipping song. Being the little idiot macho twit that I was (did I hear anybody say still am? Quiet at the back, there!!) it was absolutely of no interest to me. Boys just didn't skip and sing skipping songs.
The Clancy Brothers
showed me the error of my ways when I heard it on their LP
"In Person at Carnegie Hall"
The Irish Soldiers
A Man of double deed
When I was young
The Wren Song
The version I sing however can be found in good old Soodlum's
100 Irish Ballads Volume 1