Track 15. Reels - The Graf Spey - The Green Mountain - The Rising Sun

from "At Home" by Gerry Harrington

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The first reel I got from a recording of Michael Coleman. Rothiemurchus Rant” appears to be the Scottish ancestor of the melody. Flaherty's version is somewhat distanced from O'Neill's. “The Western Lasses” is a variant and is more noticeable in the second and third parts of the tune rather than the first. Philippe Varlet finds an early recording of the tune on a 78 RPM disc by an American Irish piper named Martin Beirne (who led the Blackbird Orchestra) on which it is called “The Grand Spy.” Sources for notated versions: fiddler Fred Finn {1919-1986} (Kiltycreen, Kilavil, County Sligo) [Flaherty]; Jim McElhone (County Derry) [Mulvihill]; New York fiddlers Andy McGann and Brian Conway [Black]; Tony Smith [Bulmer & Sharpley]. Alewine (Maid that Cut Off the Chicken’s Lips), 1987; pg. 20. Black (Music’s the Very Best Thing), 1996; No. 189, pg. 100 (appears as “The Grand Spey”). Bulmer & Sharpley (Music from Ireland), 1974, vol. 3, No. 44. Flaherty (Trip to Sligo), 1990; pg. 83. Mulvihill (1st Collection), 1986; No. 137, pg. 37. O'Neill (Krassen), 1976; pg. 162. Vallely (Armagh Pipers Club Play 50 Reels), 1982; No. 50, pg. 24. Green Linnett GLCD 1155, Martin Hayes - “Under the Moon” (1995). SIF 3002, Kevin Burke & Jackie Daly – “Eavesdropper” (1981). Green Linnet SIF 3018, “Molloy/Peoples/Brady” (1978).
The second reel was recorded on 78 RPM in Dublin in 1937 by Donegal fiddler Neil “Neilie” Boyle (1889-1961). According to Philippe Varlet (1992), Boyle was born in Easton, Pennsylvania, to Irish parents but soon after the family moved back to Ireland, where he became an influential exponent of the northern style of playing. The melody has been identified as a variant of “The Maid Behind the Bar” family of tunes. Sources for notated versions: accordion player Johnny O’Leary (Sliabh Luachra region of the Cork-Kerry border) [Moylan]; set dance music recorded live at Na Píobairí Uilleann, 1980’s [Taylor]. Moylan (Johnny O’Leary), 1994; No. 229, pg. 132. O'Neill (Krassen), 1976; pg. 96. O'Neill (Music of Ireland: 1850 Melodies), 1903/1979; No. 1205, pg. 227. O'Neill (Dance Music of Ireland: 1001 Gems), 1907/1986; No. 481, pg. 92. Taylor (Music for the Sets: Yellow Book), 1995; pg. 16. Green Linnet Records SIF 1058, Matt Molloy & Seane Keane ‑ "Contentment is Wealth" (1985). ‘Ón tSean-Am Anall’ (Danny O’Donnell). Rounder CD-1087, Neil O’Boyle – “From Galway to Dublin” (1992. Reissue of 1937 original).
The third reel I got from the Topic recording of Jackie Daly. It is a Sliabh Luachra version of the Blackthorn Stick. "An Sean‑draighnean." Irish, Reel. Ireland; Counties Kerry, Sligo. D Major. Standard. AB (Breathnach): ABC (O'Neill). See also variants “Sweeney’s Dream” and “Girl with the Laughing Eyes.” The tunes “The Old Blackthorn” and “The Jolly Clamdiggers” are also versions, although with different ‘B’ parts. Donegal fiddler Francie Byrne’s “Rising Sun” printed in An Ceol VBreathnach (CRÉ II), 1976; No. 260, pg. 134 (Breathnach (1976) took the title from Goodman’s manuscript as source Russell had no name for it). ol. 3 is a version of this tune. Sources for notated versions: fiddler Denis Murphy, (Gneeveguilla, Co. Kerry, Ireland) [Breathnach]; tin-whistle player Micko Russell (Doolin Co. Clare, Ireland) [Breathnach]. Allan's Irish Fiddler, No. 54, pg. 13. Breathnach (CRÉ II), 1976; No. 214 [1], pg. 111. O'Neill (Dance Music of Ireland: 1001 Gems), 1907/1986; No. 608, pg. 110.


from "At Home", released January 1, 2011


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Gerry Harrington County Sligo, Ireland

. Gerry's music was brought to a wider audience during the nineties through the release of two exquisite albums with accordion player Eoghan O'Sullivan, Scéal Eile and The Smokey Chimney. Gerry recorded the album “The New Road" with button accordion master Charlie Piggott. The latest work is a solo fiddle album titled “At Home” which includes music from Sliabh Luchra and Sligo. ... more

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