The Orange and the Green chords

by The Irish Rovers
  • The Orange and The Green was written by Anthony Murphy... a song about a man who had a Protestant father (orange), and a Catholic mother (green) - follows his life from birth to adulthood, and how mixed up he was due to his parents' religious differences.
  • This version by The Irish Rovers is featured on the album The Best Of The Irish Rovers.
  • Music: Key of D Major in 4/4 time at 122 bpm D Major in 4/4 time at 122 bpm (♩)
  • Chords: D, A, A7, G, Bm, Em... chord charts below.
Chart Legend
Numbered Circles: Fingers used to play chords   O: Optional Note
Barre Line: One finger holds down multiple strings   R: Root Note
Unmarked strings: Play open   X: Don't play string    B: Bass Note
Bm G Major D Major A Major A7 chord Em chord
Bm G Major D Major A Major A7 Em

The Orange and the Green

Song Key is highlighted - Transpose to any other key
              D            A           G     D    A     A7     D
Intro: 4/4 ‖     |  𝄎   |     |  𝄎  |     |     |    -      |     ‖

             Bm           Em           A     G     D     A   A7     D
           ‖     |   𝄎  |     |  𝄎  |     |     |      |   -     |     ‖
              D                           A
Chorus: Oh it is the big-gest mix-up that you have e-ver seen
           G              D              A       A7      D
        My fath-er he was O-range and me moth-er she was Green
         D                                    A
1. Oh my fa-ther was an Ulst-er  man    Proud Pro-tes-tant was he
      G             D                       A       A7       D
   My mo-ther was a Cath-o-lic girl    From Count-y Cork was she
             Bm                                 Em          A  
   They were mar-ried in two church-es    Lived hap-pi-ly e-nough
      G                D                 A          A7     D
   Un-til the day that I was born    And things got rather tough... Chorus:

       D                                A
2. Bap-tized by Fath-er Ri-ley    I was rushed a-way by car
         G              D                 A         A7       D
   To be made a lit-tle O-range-man    Me fa-ther's shin-ing star
         Bm                                   Em                A
   I was Chris-ten-ed Dav-id An-tho-ny    But still in spite of that
         G             D                    A       A7        D
   To my fa-ther I was Will-iam    While my mo-ther called me Pat... Chorus:

        D                            A
3. With Mo-ther ev-‘ry Sun-day    To Mass I'd proud-ly stroll
        G               D                      A      A7      D
   Then aft-er that the O-range lodge    Would try to save my soul
       Bm                                  Em             A  
   For both sides tried to claim me    But I was smart be-cause  
       G                  D                   A        A7      D
   I'd play the flute I’d play the harp    De-pend-ing where I was... Chorus:

       D                            A
4. One day me Ma's re-lat-ions came round to vis-it me
        G               D                 A        A7      D
   Just as my fa-ther's kin-folk were all sit-ting down to tea
      Bm                                       Em            A  
   We tried to smooth things o-ver    But they all be-gan to fight
       G                   D                    A     A7     D
   And me be-ing strict-ly neut-ral    I bashed ev'ry-one in sight... Chorus:

          D                              A
5. Now my par-ents nev-er could a-gree a-bout my type of school
      G                 D                      A       A7     D
   My learn-ing was all done at home    That's why I'm such a fool 
           Bm                                 Em                A  
   They've both passed on God rest 'em    But left me caught be-tween 
        G              D               A       A7      D
   That aw-ful col-our prob-lem of the O-range and the Green... Chorus X 2

          D            A           G     D    A     A7     D
Outro: ‖     |  𝄎   |     |  𝄎  |     |     |    -      |     ‖

         Bm           Em           A     G     D     A   A7     D
       ‖     |   𝄎  |     |  𝄎  |     |     |      |   -     |     ‖


  • Level Of Ease: Fairy Easy. There is possibly 1 barre chord of Bm depending on how you play it.
  • If you want to play the Bm in an open position - instead of a barre over the second fret with your first finger, place it on the first string on the second fret. You need to avoid strings 5 and 6, otherwise it will sound pretty ordinary as the notes E & A are not part of a Bm chord... xx4432 (see charts)
  • Song Key: D major - 2 sharps (F#, C#)
  • 4/4 time: 4 quarter-note beats per bar. You can count each bar as | 1 2 3 4 | or | 1& 2& 3& 4& | etc.
  • The tempo of the song falls into the allegro category of fast, quickly and brightly, so you will set your metronome to approximately 122 bpm.
  • | A - A7 | means you play the A chord for 2 counts and the A7 chord for 2 counts. The hyphen between the 2 chords splits the beat count evenly between the 2 chords in the bar.
  • The repeat sign 𝄎 means you repeat the chord from the previous bar.
  • The Orange and the Green is a lot of fun to play. Notice the guitarist uses mostly down beats for each beat count, due to the pace of the song. The 1st and 3rd beats of each bar are bass notes, while the 2nd and 4th beats are strums. It would look something like this:
    | Bass - Strum - Bass - Strum |. Every now and then he adds some strumming 'feels' to break it up.
Songs by The Irish Rovers on this site:
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