Clan March?

Clan March?

Hi,
Could someone please explain to me what a clan march is, and what makes if different from a jig? Thanks!

Re: Clan March?

The confusion arises because the word “march” has two distinct (although related) meanings:

(a) A tune in 2/4 or 4/4 time, normally played at a moderate speed.

(b) Any tune that is used for marching. This incudes tunes in 2/4 time, 3/4 time, 4/4 time and 6/8 time.

Here on the session there is no tune classification called “march”. That is because tunes are classified here esentially by time signature.

So (for example) if you were submitting a clan march which happened to be in 6/8 time, you would have to submit it as a jig. If you wanted to tell everybody that it was a clan march, you would need to add a comment in the tune comment section.

Re: Clan March?

Nowt to do with the time sig. I’d say that it all depends on the tune. I suppose an example of a Clan March would be something like ‘Brian Boru’s March’ or ‘Lord Mayo’ as opposed to the run of the mill march tunes like ’Kelly from Killanne or ‘The Mountains of Pomeroy’

Re: Clan March?

Your’re clouding the issue a bit there, Free Reed. I presume that rudallcarte already knows that not all marches are clan marches!

The question wasn’t: “what is the difference between an clan march and a “non-clan march”, but “what makes a clan march different from a jig?” The question might make sense if all clan marches were jigs - but they’re not.

For example O’Donovan Clan March - 3/4 time
For example The Clan’s March (Doon the Brae) - 4/4 time

So I couldn’t really respond to the initial question without discussing the two significant meanings of the word “march”. I certainly wasn’t suggesting that clan marches are always associated with a particular time signatures.

To use one of the examples that you quoted - “Brian Borus” - yes, certainly a clan march - and that particular one happen’s to be in 6/8 time.

But to return to the orginal question!

Jig - any tune in 6/8 time.

Clan March - a tune (any time signature) used as a march and also associated with a clan (Ireland or Scotland).

Can anyone offer better definitions?

Re: Clan March?

It’s a tune that a clan used to march to >_>

Unfortunately, that’s probably the most accurate definition of a clan march you can get, given the aforementioned propensity of the things for wheedling around in different time signatures and keys. You can get into the “feel” of it, which is more - you know, march-y - but really, there’s nothing to say one or the other except the history books!

–DtM

Re: Clan March?

Maybe the difference is that Clan Marches are played with a bit more ‘balls’? I was playing O’Sullivan’s there yesterday - you could think of it as a tune played whilst marching into battle, god forbid etc. O’Neill’s Cavalcade is often played that way as well, with a touch of aggression.

Posted .

Re: Clan March?

You have a point there, wounded hussar - but with one flaw:

In history, many tunes have been played when marching into battle - but they’re certainly not all clan marches 🙂

Re: Clan March?

Mix - I did open with ‘Nowt (nothing) to do with the time sig’ which should have sorted the ‘jig’ question for the lad. However, as Rudallcarte is from California, I will try this example of how I might explain the difference between ‘a so called Clan March’ and an ‘Ordinary March’. Forget all the technacalities, picture this……A body of men carrying Pikes, Swords, Sling Shots, etc, marching through waist high heather, furze, or similar vegetation. The piper leading them is playing that good old Sousa march’ Stars and Stripes Forever’ at the pace it is supposed to be played at or ‘Brian Boru’s March’ Whichever tune the marchers can keep up to without falling over…I would be inclined to call that a ‘Clan March’ ……..and now if you’ll excuse me, I have to be back in the ‘Home’ this afternoon.

Re: Clan March?

I though Clan Marches were a bit like team songs. You don’t sing the other team’s because you may accidentaly fall in with the wrong crowd or be taken for a spy. And your clan doesn’t play the other clan’s march because they may get annoyed and attack you. Just imagine staggering off the field of battle into the wrong camp because you got the B parts mixed up.

Re: Clan March?

The American Civlil Liberties Union ensures the right of the Klan to demonstrate freely. Oh, you meant the Clan…….Nevermind.

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Re: Clan March?

Thanks for the replies. To clarify, my question was not about the difference between a clan march and any other kind of march. I was just asking if there is any strucural difference typical of a clan march in 6/8 that would make it different than a jig.

Re: Clan March?

A jig and a 6/8 march might look the same, but the rhythm and feel are different. Just like you can take a hornpipe and turn it into a reel by changing the speed and emphasis.
Marches are 120 BPM generally (at least that is the US military standard pace, different countries march at different paces), and those beats get a heavy emphasis. A jig gets played with lighter emphasis, more fluidlity, and a quicker pace.