Presenting a slightly smoother sound than their predecessors the Clancy Brothers, the Irish Rovers were one of the preeminent traditional Irish bands of the ‘60s. Covering the years 1965 to 1969, The Best of the Irish Rovers presents the heyday of a band that could be seen as an Irish analogue to Peter, Paul & Mary. They incorporated country (“Whiskey On A Sunday”), pop (the Herman Hermits-esque “Mrs. Crandall’s Boarding House”), and soft rock (“Years May Come, Years May Go”) into their vision of traditional Irish folk music. Despite its AOR tendencies the band could drum up convincing performances of rousing traditional ballads like “The Orange and the Green” and “Nancy Whiskey.” But its real talent was for producing gentle Irish-tinged story songs, including their definitive Shel Silverstein-penned hit “The Unicorn.” They may not have been the most authentic Irish band of all time (they hailed from Calgary, after all), but their music served as an Irish primer for the boomer generation and their songs are St. Patrick’s Day favorites to this day.