Northern Ireland news

Rod Stewart sings Easter Rising song Grace on the BBC

Rod Stewart has sang several lines from the rebel song 'Grace' on the BBC, which he claims he was previously banned from singing by the corporation
Connla Young

ROD STEWART has defied an alleged BBC ban on the Irish ballad Grace by singing several lines of the song while being interviewed on the station’s popular breakfast programme.

There was controversy earlier this week when the rock legend claimed that BBC bosses had banned him from singing the song on the Chris Evans' Breakfast Show.

The song tells the story of 1916 Rising leader Joseph Plunkett and Grace Gifford, who were married in Kilmainham jail in Dublin shortly before his execution.

"They won’t let me sing Grace because of its Irish, anti-English overtones in the song," He told Billboard magazine.

"It's not really an IRA song and was written in the 80s. Forget about it, it's one of the greatest love songs ever written."

However, the rock singer seized his chance when invited to sing while taking part in an interview for the BBC’s Breakfast programme yesterday morning.

Asked by Charlie Stayt to sing something from his new album, he sang several lines form the moving ballad.

“It’s a song off the album called Grace, it’s about the Easter uprising,” he said.

Mr Stewart has previously said he first heard the song being sung by Celtic supporters and decided to learn more.

A spokesperson for the BBC previously denied the song was banned.

Grace Gifford and Joseph Plunkett were married in Kilmainham jail in Dublin shortly before his execution for his part in the 1916 Rising

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