Farewell To Whiskey polka

Also known as Farewell To Whisky, John McKenna’s, My Love Is But A Lassie, Step Dance.

There are 53 recordings of a tune by this name.

A tune by this name has been recorded together with Dark Girl Dressed In Blue (a few times), Jenny Lind (a few times).

Farewell To Whiskey has been added to 230 tunebooks.

Download ABC

Eight settings

X: 1
T: Farewell To Whiskey
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|:EGG/2B/2A/2G/2|BEEG/2E/2|DGB/2A/2G/2A/2|d2Bd|
e/2f/2g/2e/2dB|c/2B/2A/2G/2AB|DGB/2A/2G/2A/2|BGG2:|
|:dB/2d/2gf/2g/2|e/2f/2g/2e/2dB|dB/2d/2gf/2g/2|efg2|
e/2f/2g/2e/2dB|c/2B/2A/2G/2AB|DGB/2A/2G/2A/2|BGG2:||
ABC
X: 2
T: Farewell To Whiskey
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|: D2 G2 BAGA | B2 E2 EGFE | D2 G2 BAGA | d2 B2 B2 d2 |
efge d2 B2 | cBAG A2 B2 | D2 G2 BAGA | B2 G2 G4 :|
|: d2 Bd g2 d2 | efge d2 B2 | d2 Bd g2 d2 | e2 f2 g4 |
efge d2 B2 | cBAG A2 B2 | D2 G2 BAGA | B2 G2 G4 :|
# Added by bdh .
ABC
X: 3
T: Farewell To Whiskey
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
(G/F/)|DG BG|AE EG|DG B/A/G/A/|Bd.ee/|
e/f/g/e/ dg|c/B/A/G/ AB|DG B/A/G/A/|BG G/:|
|:(B/c/)|dB g(B/c/)|d/c/B/A/ G(B/c/)|dB g(f/g/)|a/g/f/e/ .dd/|
e/f/g/f/ dg|c/B/A/G/ AB|DG B/A/G/A/|BG G/:|
# Added by flipe .
ABC
X: 4
T: Farewell To Whiskey
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|: EG G/B/A/G/ | BEEG/2E/2 | DG B/A/G/A/ | d2 Bd |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ | BG G2 :|
|: dB/d/ gf/g/ | e/f/g/e/ dB | dB/d/ gf/g/ | ef g2 |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ | BG G2 :|
ABC
X: 5
T: Farewell To Whiskey
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|: EG G/B/A/G/ | BE EG/E/ | DG B/A/G/A/ | d2 Bd |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ | BG G2 :|
|: dB/d/ gf/g/ | e/f/g/e/ dB | dB/d/ gf/g/ | ef g2 |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ | BG G2 :|
ABC
X: 6
T: Farewell To Whiskey
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
DG B/A/G/A/ | BE E/F/G/E/ | DG B/A/G/B/ | dB Bd |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ |[1 BG G :|[2 BG G>B ||
|: dB gd | e/f/g/e/ dB/c/ | dB gd | ef g2 |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ |[1 BG G>B :|[2 BG G |]
ABC
X: 7
T: Farewell To Whiskey
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
DF BA/G/ | AE EG | DG BA/G/ | dB Bd |
eg dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | D>G B/A/G/A | BG G :|
dB gB | c/B/A/G/ AB/c/ | dB gB | ef g>d |
eg dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | D>G B/A/G/A |[1 BG G :|[2 BG G2 |]
ABC
X: 8
T: Farewell To Whiskey
R: polka
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
D2 G2 | BAGA | B2 E2 | E4 | D2 G2 | GABc | d2 B2 | B2 d2 |
efge | d2 B2 | cBAG | A2 B2 | D2 G2 | BAGA | B2 G2 | G4||
ABC

Twenty-three comments

Farewell to Whisky

This tune is played regularly at sessions in SW Scotland. It is usually referenced as a polka, but as has been pointed out by older players it is Neil Gow’s lament for the closing of the Whisky distilleries and is in fact a slow air. I’ve played it both ways and I must admit to siding with the old ones.

Farewell to Whisky

The story does have a happy ending. I seem to remember that the forbidding of distilling whisky was due to a national grain shortage at the time, but the ban was subsequently lifted. (How much it was adhered to in the first place is debatable). I’m sure Gow also wrote another tune called "Whisky, Welcome Back Again". Does anyone know how so many Scottish tunes like this one ended up in Co. Kerry, being played as slides and polkas ? I’ve often wondered, but have found no explanation yet.

Posted by .

Gow’s Farewell to Whisky

I always understood that Gow’sFarewell to Whisky was a personal response to Doctor’s Orders and thet his Welcome Back to Whisky was a response to a change in his Doctor’s prescriptions!

Gow (Older & Younger) tunes were played extensively through the North of England and they turn upin all the contemporary manuscript collections. They werrew obviously appreciated and distributed by fiddlers.I’m not surprised if they have been found lurking in Ireland or America.
Noel Jackson
Angels of the North

Noelbats, I think that may be Carolan’s Lament for Whiskey you’re thinking of. Carolan a desperate drunk, and if I remeber correctly, sought a second opinion when his doctor ordered him to stop drinking. The second opinion he received was a prescription for a glass of whiskey a day.

USA Versions

This tune was collected in the 1930’s from fiddlers born before the turn of the century in SW Pennsylvania… a wealth of Scottish tunes come from this region.

Different version

I know an entirely, entirely different song named "Farewell to Whiskey" of this which is a waltz played in 4/4. It is an Air attributed to Neil Gow in my book, but it sounds NOTHING like the version here.

There is a reference by Francis McPeake in his "Pocket Tin Whistle Book" to this being the third tune in "Henry Kane’s Set". The First two are "The Spanish Lady" and "The Grand Old Dame Britannia". His version of this is phrased a little differently.

One of my favourite tunes

I was listening to this tune on the Harry Bradley cd and was trying to work out the guitar chords. But i can’t seem to get them right. Can anyone help me out on this one?

# Posted on January 21st 2007 by slainte:

"He uses a marching band flute, which is probably tuned in C."
~ slainte (~ good direction deserves repetition…)

Chords

Thanks for the reply but I have the flute part worked out. It is played on a flute in the key of Bb. It’s just the chords I need now! And also to the second tune Bonaparte crossing the Rhine. Thanks again.

Hello Bonaparte, re: Farewell to Whiskey

In the Tunes section, for the tune Farewell To Whiskey, bonaparte wrote:
"I was listening to this tune on the Harry Bradley cd and was trying to work out the guitar chords. But i can’t seem to get them right. Can anyone help me out on this one?
# Posted on January 21st 2007 by bonaparte"

Did you ever get help on those chords? I could use some help, too.

Please email me in reply?

Thanks,

stv

http://cdbaby.com/Culchies

Chords, Again!!

Hi Stv Culchie,
No haven’t managed to get the chords yet to these tunes. I can usually work out straight forward keys but these two tunes have me scratchin the brainbox! If I can get the chords I hope to give these two tunes a blast at a session some night! Even Bouzouki parts as I have just aquired one and still trying to figure out what its all about! Thanks

Farewell to Whiskey

You can see (as well as hear) this polka being played on
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6YIrzeY9iwo.

The tunes played in the video are Farewell To Whiskey, The Dark Girl Dressed In Blue, and The Killavil Postman (a barndance).
The musicians (L-R) are Johnny Óg, Steve Simonds, Tomás Neachtain, Charlie Lennon and daughter Eilish, and Liam O’Hara.
There’s a second guitar player whose face can’t be seen, but he’s believed to be the Dubliner Dave Flynn.
(Many thanks to various contributers to the comments on Discussion #14004 and Tune #7137 for the above information)

I prefer playing this as a march:

M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|: D2 G2 BAGA | B2 E2 EGFE | D2 G2 BAGA | d2 B2 B2 d2 |
efge d2 B2 | cBAG A2 B2 | D2 G2 BAGA | B2 G2 G4 :|
|: d2 Bd g2 d2 | efge d2 B2 | d2 Bd g2 d2 | e2 f2 g4 |
efge d2 B2 | cBAG A2 B2 | D2 G2 BAGA | B2 G2 G4 :|

Posted by .

Version from “O’Neill’s Music of Ireland”

X: 1
T: Farewell to Whiskey (O’Neill’s Music of Ireland)
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
R: Polka
K: G
(G/F/)|DG BG|AE EG|DG B/A/G/A/|Bd.ee/|
e/f/g/e/ dg|c/B/A/G/ AB|DG B/A/G/A/|BG G/:|
|:(B/c/)|dB g(B/c/)|d/c/B/A/ G(B/c/)|dB g(f/g/)|a/g/f/e/ .dd/|
e/f/g/f/ dg|c/B/A/G/ AB|DG B/A/G/A/|BG G/:|

Posted by .

“Farewell to Whisky” ~ cleaning up the original ABCs

X: 1
T: Farewell To Whisky
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
R: polka
K: Gmaj
|: EG G/B/A/G/ | BEEG/2E/2 | DG B/A/G/A/ | d2 Bd |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ | BG G2 :|
|: dB/d/ gf/g/ | e/f/g/e/ dB | dB/d/ gf/g/ | ef g2 |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ | BG G2 :|

Oops! That’s weird, it cut-and-pasted something different, possibly it didn’t cut the finished clean up? :-/ Here it goes again, and proof read before hitting [post] ~

X: 1
T: Farewell To Whisky
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
R: polka
K: Gmaj
|: EG G/B/A/G/ | BE EG/E/ | DG B/A/G/A/ | d2 Bd |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ | BG G2 :|
|: dB/d/ gf/g/ | e/f/g/e/ dB | dB/d/ gf/g/ | ef g2 |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ | BG G2 :|

“Farewell To Whiskey / Whisky”

X: 4
T: Farewell To Whiskey
S: YouTube: a session in Tigh Hughes Pub in Spideal, Co. Galway
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
R: polka
K: Gmaj
|: G/E/ |\
DG B/A/G/A/ | BE E/F/G/E/ | DG B/A/G/B/ | dB Bd |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ |[1 BG G :|[2 BG G>B ||
|: dB gd | e/f/g/e/ dB/c/ | dB gd | ef g2 |
e/f/g/e/ dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | DG B/A/G/A/ |[1 BG G>B :|[2 BG G |]

As linked to by Lazyhound above, see more there ~ and here it is again:

Polkas at a session in Tigh Hughes Pub in Spiddal, Co. Galway
Polkas: Farewell To Whiskey / The Dark Girl Dressed In Blue / Barndance: The Killavil Postman
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6YIrzeY9iwo


Lovely… :-)

“Farewell To Whisky” = “The Seige of Ennis” 2 of 3 ~ rescued duplication

~ /tunes/11853
Submitted on March 23rd 2012 by fiddlerman.
http://www.thesession.org/members/82037

X: 6
T: Farewell To Whisky
T: Seige of Ennis #2, The
M: 2/4
L: 1/8
R: polka
K: Gmaj
|: G/E/ |\
DF BA/G/ | AE EG | DG BA/G/ | dB Bd |
eg dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | D>G B/A/G/A | BG G :|
|: B/c/ |\
dB gB | c/B/A/G/ AB/c/ | dB gB | ef g>d |
eg dB | c/B/A/G/ AB | D>G B/A/G/A |[1 BG G :|[2 BG G2 |]

The ‘comments’ from the above rescued transcription can be found for "The Rattlin’ Bog", the link given below.

"Allan’s Irish Fiddler: Containing 120 Reels & Jigs, Hornpipes & Set Dances selected from all sources, arranged by Hugh McDermott"
Mozart Allan, Glasgow
Page 30, Set Dances #118: "The Seige of Ennis"

That suggested set of polkas:

1. ) "The Rattlin’ Bog" (with ‘comments’)
http://www.thesession.org/tunes/583
2. ) "Farewell To Whisky"
http://www.thesession.org/tunes/1529
3. ) "Spanish Ladies"
http://www.thesession.org/tunes/1117

Oops! I forgot to remove the second link… :-/

Step Dance

The version that I’ve added above is a version from the Isle of Man. We call it Step Dance, and it is the tune that’s used for a simple children’s dance/game. There was no B tune collected on the Island!

CreadurMawnOrganig noelbats the tune that you are describing is O’Carolan’s Receipt / Dr. John Stafford and your are right. Carolan wasn’t feeling well so he went to this doctor and he told him to give up the drink. He did and then he got really depressed. So he went to his friend Dr. John Stafford who told him to go back on the whiskey and that night the two of them drank some whiskey and Carolan was so grateful that he wrote him that tune.