From the recording The Hard Way Home
I got this song from Maurice Lennon who recommended it to me on YouTube. It seems everything is on YouTube these days! This is an old song of which there are many different versions. It tells the tale of Napoleon’s March on Russia through a conversation between Napoleon’s son, Napoleon II and his mother, the Empress Marie Louise. In the song, Napoleon’s son can be heard saying that one day he will win for his mother, The Bonny Bunch of Roses, this being England. Terry Moylan in his book, ‘The Age of REVOLUTION’ in the Irish Song Tradition’ (P 141), talks about this song as being one of the main ballads of the Napoleonic era. Moylan states that this song is one of the main Irish ballads associated with the Napoleonic era. It has a close association with the Irish Air, An Binsin Luachra, which during the 1860’s was a treasonable offence for anyone to be heard singing this song. The Irish people in general sympathized with Napoleon, seeing him as their possible liberator from the tyranny of British rule. Just myself on vocals and bodhrán.