Sunday, October 31, 2010

All Around My Hat

The song "All Around my Hat" is of nineteenth century English origin. In an early version, dating from the 1820s, a Cockney costermonger vowed to be true to his fiancee, who had been sentenced to seven years transportation to Australia for theft and to mourn his loss by wearing green willow sprigs in his hatband for "a twelve-month and a day," in a traditional symbol of mourning.
In Ireland, Peadar Kearney adapted the song to make it relate to an Republican lass whose lover has died in the Easter Rising, and who swears to wear the Irish tricolour in her hat in remembrance.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Down by the Glenside

Down by the Glenside (The Bold Fenian Men) is an Irish rebel song written by Peadar Kearney, an Irish Republican and composer of numerous rebel songs, including "The Soldier's Song" ("Amhrán na bhFiann"), now the Irish National Anthem.

Kearney was a member of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, popularly known as the Fenians. He wrote the song about the time of the 1916 Rising. It evokes the memory of the freedom-fighters of the previous generation (strong, manly forms...eyes with hope gleaming), as recalled by Ireland personified as an old woman down by the glenside. It is effectively a call to arms for a generation of Irishmen accustomed to political nationalism.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

For Linda

A tune for whistle and bouzouki by Gatherer

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Josefin's Waltz

This powerful tune is called "Josefins Dopvals" (Josefin's Baptism Waltz) and was written by the guitarist of the great Swedish folk band "Väsen": Roger Tallroth.
Here you see Joseph Soboll playing the tune on his 12-string cittern, tuned D-G-D-G-D-G, wth capo on first fret:

Friday, October 22, 2010

Col. John Irwin (Planxty Irwin)

This lovely piece was composed by Turlough O'Carolan for Colonel John Irwin of Tanrego House, which is situated on Ballysodare Bay, Co. Sligo. In the second verse Carolan mentions the Colonel's exploits in Flanders and speaks of him as a young man. The song was composed probably not long after the Peace of Utrecht in 1713 when the Colonel would be home from the wars ...
Col. Irwin was born in 1680 and died in 1752. He was High Sheriff of Sligo in 1731.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Monday, October 18, 2010

Barbara Allen

A version by Art Garfunkel

Sheet music:

Barbara Allen

In Scarlet town where I was born
There was a fair maid dwelling
And every youth cried well away
For her name was Barbara Allen
Twas in the merry month of May
The green buds were a swelling
Sweet William on his deathbed lay
For the love of Barbara Allen

He sent a servant unto her
To the place she was dwelling
Saying you must come to his deathbed now
If your name be Barbara Allen

Slowly slowly she got up
Slowly slowly she came nigh him
And the only words to him she said
Young man I think you're dying
As she was walking oer the fields
She heard the death bell knelling
And every stroke it seemed to say
Hardhearted Barbara Allen

Oh mother mother make my bed
Make it long and make it narrow
Sweet William died for me today
I'll die for him tomorrow

They buried her in the old churchyard
They buried him in the choir
And from his grave grew a red red rose
From her grave a green briar

They grew and grew to the steeple top
Till they could grow no higher
And there they twined in a true love's knot
Red rose around green briar

Friday, October 15, 2010

The Boys that wore the Green

Michael Corcoran (September 21, 1827 – December 22, 1863) was an Irish American general in the Union Army during the American Civil War and a close confidant of President Abraham Lincoln. He led the 69th regiment into action at the First Battle of Bull Run. Corcoran also led the regiment to Washington, D.C. and served in the Washington defenses building Fort Corcoran.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Chanson à boire

This is a traditional drinking song from Brittany brought by Tri Yann

Sheet music for 4 voices

Friday, October 8, 2010

Preab San Ol

18th century Irish song by Riocard Bairéid, originally in Gaelic; English version by Donald O' Sullivan

Preab san ól
(another round)

1.Why spend your leisure bereft of pleasure?
Amassing treasure you'll scrape and save.
Why look so canny at ev'ry penny?
You'll take no money within the grave.
Landlords and gentry with all their plenty
Must still go empty where'er they're bound,
So to my thinking, we'd best be drinking,
Our glasses clinking on- another round.

2. The huxter greedy will grind the needy
Their straits unheeding, shouts: 'money down!'
His special vice is his fancy prices,
For a florin's value he'll charge a pound.
With hump for trammel, the scripture's camel
Missed the needle's eye and so came to ground
Why pine for riches when still you've stitches
To hold your britches up- another round.

3.The shipmen trading in Spain and Aden
Return well laden with oil and corn.
And from Gibraltar their course they'll alter
And steer for Malta and the Golden Horn.
With easy motion they sail life's ocean
With ne'er a notion they'll soon run aground,
So lads and lasses make all your passes
And fill your glasses for.. another round.

4. King Solomon's glory, so famed in story,
Was far outshone by the lily's guise.
But cold winds harden both field and garden;
Pleading for pardon, the lily dies.
Life's but a bubble of toil and trouble,
A feathered arrow, once shot ne'er found.
It's nought but miming, so ends my rhyming
And still we've time in for- another round.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

An Emigrant's Daughter

A song about Irish emigration.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Eamann an Chnoic

"Éamonn an Chnoic" ("Ned of the Hill") is a popular song in traditional Irish music. It is a slow, mournful ballad with a somber theme and no chorus.

The song concerns Éamonn Ó Riain (Edmund Ryan), an Irish aristocrat who lived in County Tipperary from 1670–1724 and led a bandit or rapparee gang. Although there is no positive proof of Ryan's existence, he is mentioned in a pamphlet of 1694, in which he and four other raparee leaders called for the overthrow of William of Orange in favour of the Catholic James II.
The background to Ryan's career was the confiscation of Irish Catholic land in the Act of Settlement 1652 after the Cromwellian conquest of Ireland when many dispossessed landowners became outlaws, known as "tories" or "rapparees". Their ranks were swelled after the Williamite War of 1689-91, when many of the defeated Catholic Jacobites turned to banditry. It is likely that Ryan himself served in the Jacobite army.
It is said that Ryan became a rapparee or outlaw after shooting a tax collector dead during a quarrel over the confiscation of a poor woman's cow. Various other stories are told in which Ó Riain plays the role of the rebel hero who battles authority in the mode of Robin Hood and countless others.

You can finds here the sheet music of Eamann an Chnoic, with the melody for low whistle and bouzouki as second voice

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Morphet Rant

A beautifull, fast reel

Friday, October 1, 2010

Son Ar Chistr

Aka the Cider Song, a drinking song from brittany