The Maid Behind The Bar reel

Also known as The Babe Behind The Bar, The Barmaid, The Green Mountain, The Haymaker, Judy’s, Kiss The Maid Behind The Bar, Little Judy, Little Judy’s, New York.

There are 230 recordings of a tune by this name.

A tune by this name has been recorded together with Cooley’s (lots of times), The Reconciliation (lots of times), O’Rourke’s (a few times).

The Maid Behind The Bar has been added to 2,318 tunebooks.

Download ABC

Six settings

X: 1
T: The Maid Behind The Bar
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:FAAB AFED|FAAB ABde|fBBA Bcde|fBBA BcdA|
FAAB AFED|FAAB ABde|fBBA BcdB|AFEF D4:|
|:faab afde|fdad fd d2|efga beef|gebe gfeg|
fgaf bfaf|defd e2 de|fBBA BcdB|AFEF D4:|
ABC
X: 2
T: The Maid Behind The Bar
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
E|FAAB AFED|FAAB A2de|fBBA Bcde|fdgf efdB|
FAAB AFED|FAAB A2de|fBBA BcdB|AFEF D3:|
e|faag fdde|fdad fdd2|efga beef|gebe gee2|
faaf b2af|defd e2de|fBBA BcdB|AFEF D3:|
ABC
X: 3
T: The Maid Behind The Bar
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Cmaj
|: E4 E3G |EDCD (3EFG cA |dc (3ccc dcAc| dc (3ccc dcAG|
E4 E3G |EDCD (3EFG cA |dc (3ccc dcAE|1 GEDG ECCD :|2 GEDG EC C2 ||
eg ^fg ec ~c2 | ecgc ec ~c2 | e2 ag ed (3ddd| edad ed (3ddd |
eg (3ggg aged | (3ccc cA d2 cd| (3edc dc AGcA| GEDF EC C2 |
(3ggg ^fa gc ~c2 | Gc ~c2 cdeg| ^fd ~d2 defg| (3agf fe fedf |
ec ~c2 AFGc | AF ~F2 Ad ~d2 | dcdc AGcA| GEDF ED C2 ||
# Added by bobbi .
ABC
X: 4
T: The Maid Behind The Bar
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
zE|:"D"FAAB AFED|"D"FAAB A2de|"Bm"fBBA Bcde|"Em"fdgf "A"efdB|
"D"FAAB AFED|"D"FAAB A2de|"Bm"fBBA "G"BcdB|[1"A"AFEF "D"D2zE:|[2"A"AFEF "D"D2de|]
|:"D"faag fdde|"D"fdad fdd2|"Em"efga beef|"Em"gebe "A"geeg|
"D"fgaf b2af|"D"defd "A"e2de|"Bm"fBBA "G"BcdB|[1"A"AFEF "D"D2de:|[2"A"AFEF "D"D4|]
# Added by Bryce .
ABC
X: 5
T: The Maid Behind The Bar
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|:DE|FAAB AFED|FAAB A2 de|fBBA Bcde|fdgf edcB|
A3B AFED|B3A A2de|f3e dBB2|AFEF D3:|
|:de|faag fdde|f3g afdf|efga beef|g3a bgeg|
f3a bc' (3d'c'b|afdf e3 g|fBBA Bc (3dcB|AFEF D3:|
ABC
X: 6
T: The Maid Behind The Bar
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Dmaj
|: FA/A/AB AFED | FA/A/AF ABde | fBBA Bcde | f2gf edBB |
AA/A/AB AFED | FA/A/AF ABde | fBBA BcdB |1 AFEF D2DE :|2 AFEF D2 de ||
|: faag fddd | fdad fddd | ef/f/ga bgee | gebe geeg |
fg/g/aa baaf | defd edde | fBBA BcdB |1 AFEF D2 de :|2 AFEF D2DE ||
# Added by Fauno .
ABC

Twenty-one comments

This is a very popular tune that can be heard at most sessions.

Try turning the A’s in the very first phrase (FAAB) into a triplet. You can do this wherever this phrase appears.

The second part can be quite tricky. Reaching those high notes can involve quite a stretch of the fingers. Don’t try to play this part at session speed until you can play it perfectly at a slower pace.

Maid Behind The Bar

In Ontario old-time fiddling circles this tune is usually called "Judy’s Reel" or "Little Judy’s Reel". It’s in 1000 Fiddle Tunes under that title. The "B" part also turns up as the third part of the French Canadian reel "La Ronfleuse Gobeil" (Snoring Ms. Gobeil)

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IN the details section you might find that its also called "The Green Mountain", (See Mike McGoldrick Album Morning Rory). However, The Green Mountain is a different tune!

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Tune titles

That’s hardly anything new though, is it?

I mean there are some tunes with twenty names and some names with twenty tunes.

That’s just the way it is Irish music.

Maid Behind the Bar

It’s popular in Newfoundland, too. I have heard it paired behind Flowers of Edinburgh and before Sheehan’s Reel. Nicely put together! Also heard it played on both mandolin and fiddle. Works either way.

The Maid Behind the Bar

I once heard this tune is listed as "The Green Mountains" in O’Neill’s. Is it true?

Here’s what I play on flute.

K: Dmaj
E|FAAB AFED|FAAB A2de|fBBA Bcde|fdgf efdB|
FAAB AFED|FAAB A2de|fBBA BcdB|AFEF D3:|
e|faag fdde|fdad fdd2|efga beef|gebe gee2|
faaf b2af|defd e2de|fBBA BcdB|AFEF D3:|

The Green Mountain is indeed a different tune although I play it in a set with the Maid Behind the bar coincidently.
This is one of the first tunes I learned (what a way to start, eh?).

New York Reel

I first came across this melody listed as the "New York Reel" in an early collection of (5-string) banjo music published in the 1850’s (Buckley’s New Banjo Method). Interestingly, it appears alongside another piece called the "Empire Hornpipe." I was impressed to hear the same two melodies played in a set on an old recording of fiddler Neil O’Boyle. O’Boyle, however, called them Harvest Home and The Green Mountain. Is there some traditional association of these pieces?

The following reels are structurally very close, they even share whole bars and beats:
The Green Mountain http://www.thesession.org/tunes/166
The Maid Behind the Bar http://www.thesession.org/tunes/64
The Tinker’s Daughter http://www.thesession.org/tunes/353
Interestingly, they are all very popular, often played and, I assume, rarely confused with one another: I wonder how many musicians have realised how similar they are on paper?
The Silver Spear http://www.thesession.org/tunes/182 falls in that category too.

Nobilis Humilis, a 12th-13th century hymn from Orkney, may be the earliest mention we have of the appealing pentatonic run of notes in the first bar of The Maid Behind the Bar: ‘FAAB AF… D’.
This ‘run’ is famously found in Stephen Foster’s Oh Suzannah! and some other old favourites like the Ozark song: (Get Along Home) Cindy or Whisky in the Jar (viz: ‘I went out on the mountain […] Thought I heard my true love say’ / ‘As I was a goin’ over […] I first produced my pistol’)

The notes in the manuscript are part of the lower voice, on the words:
“vene –rabilis et tutor landa-bilis”: AccdcA…F (F Lydian mode)

See for yourself at: http://www.vikinganswerlady.com/music.shtml
and http://www.orkneycommunities.co.uk/imagelibrary/picture/number901.asp

Looking at the sheet music in O’Neill’s, 1,850 tunes, I’d say this tune here IS The Green Mountain, pg. 227, #1205. Somehow, a green mountain seems more like the picture this tune presents than a barmaid. Oh well, that’s my personal opinion.

Personal opinion

It’s maid behind the bar so beat it :p

Haymaker as played on Chicago Reel album

X: 1
T:The Haymaker
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
R: reel
K: Cmaj
|: E4 E3G |EDCD (3EFG cA |dc (3ccc dcAc| dc (3ccc dcAG|
E4 E3G |EDCD (3EFG cA |dc (3ccc dcAE|1 GEDG ECCD :|2 GEDG EC C2 ||
eg ^fg ec ~c2 | ecgc ec ~c2 | e2 ag ed (3ddd| edad ed (3ddd |
eg (3ggg aged | (3ccc cA d2 cd| (3edc dc AGcA| GEDF EC C2 |
(3ggg ^fa gc ~c2 | Gc ~c2 cdeg| ^fd ~d2 defg| (3agf fe fedf |
ec ~c2 AFGc | AF ~F2 Ad ~d2 | dcdc AGcA| GEDF ED C2 ||

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“The Maid Behind the Bar”

Appears in a later edition of Harding’s Collection of Jigs and Reels as "The Ratification Reel." Wouldn’t put much stock in that; a number of mixed up titles in Harding.

played as a hornpipe?

Has anyone else played this as a hornpipe?

It does add a bit to the spirit of the tune. You can almost see the maid behind the bar bouncing around and flirting a bit.

Too many musicians try to play this as a reel at maximum tempo, trying to prove how fast they can play it. This is quite delightful when played as a hornpipe at a bouncy and playful tempo.

Not quite….

…I’ve played it as a strathspey.

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Rovadorion is that a quintuplet on the 5th bar of the B part or are you forgetting to add a triplet somewhere?

It’s supposed to be a triplet from top D to high B, legato of course on the pipes.

Should be OK now.