Locals raise their voices to support the ‘bai’s’ down under

SOME have taken a trip of a lifetime to celebrate the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand, others will be wide awake from the early hours to watch Ireland’s attempts to bring the William Ellis trophy back home, but four local men have developed a unique way to support the men in green by creating their own World Cup song.

Mark Fraser, Lee Kirkwood and Paul Kirkwood from Lisburn and Jimmy Lyons from Dromore, known collectively as The Bai’s, have written and recorded the song, Come on the Irish, as their own personal way of answering Ireland’s call.

Mark said the song was done just “for a bit of craic”.

The rugby fanatics, who all follow Ulster and Ireland, came up with the idea after Jimmy suggested there had never been a song for the Rugby World Cup team. And so their quest for musical history began.

“Jimmy had the idea for the song,” Mark explained. “He didn’t think there had ever been a song for the Rugby World Cup team before, the way a song is always done for the football team. He phoned Lee and said, ‘Do you fancy writing a song for the Irish World Cup team?’ The idea was suggested on Tuesday, the song was written on the Wednesday and recorded on the Thursday; it was all very fast paced.”

The Bai’s will be hoping the Irish work as well in New Zealand!

The guys recorded the track at Jimmy’s home studio, with Lee writing the bulk of the song and the others using their “artistic licence” to add to the finished product.

Mark continued: “It was really good craic, and people have had fun listening to it.”

The Bai’s did have to tackle a slight problem, however, when their finished product included two players who didn’t make Ireland’s final team selection for New Zealand, and a last minute line-up change was needed in the lyrics. With their full team sheet now in order, the Bai’s song is online and available to download completely free of charge.

“It’s all for the fun, we’re not trying to raise money,” Mark added. “The song is genuinely just for the craic, we’re not expecting anything.”

They do, however, have some ambitions for the song.

“The next step is hopefully supporters in New Zealand can get wind of it, it would be nice to hear it sung on TV,” said Mark. “Hopefully the readers of the Ulster Star can help the song get attention worldwide and fans in New Zealand can pick it up.”

The four guys will be organising lots of ‘World Cup breakfasts’ during the coming weeks to watch the early morning starts, however, they do have one pipe dream from their musical exploits.

“We’d love the song to get so big that Guinness would bring us out to New Zealand to sing it in the bars,” joked Mark.

Well you can’t blame The Bai’s for dreaming.

The song is available to download free from http://www.thebais.co.uk/music A Facebook page has also been created dedicated to the song and you can visit it at http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/pages/Ireland-2011-rugby-world-cup-song-Come-on-the-Irish/238066936229397 Alternatively, you can follow The Bai’s on Twitter.

Mark added: “We’ve had quite a good reaction, the best reaction you can hope for as people have liked it. I think the more you listen to it, the more it sticks in your head; it’s catchy. My kids love it, my daughter Hannah, 4, and son Matthew, 1, dance along and Lee’s kids love it; it’s just good craic.”

Next stop chart domination and The Bai’s greatest hits!