Young Catherine

Young Catherine

Hi.
We heard this tune on an album by Craobh Rua a while back and recently played it on our live gig. Here’s a clip.
This seems to be a rather unknown tune, I have only found the one recording of it. Does anyone know its origin? Or other recordings of it?
(Sorry about the unexperienced piping but this was my first live appearance playing the pipes with my band Fir Arda)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSlYWIEDgVM

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Young Catherine

This tune reminds me a bit of "Fair Young Mary ("Mhairi Bhan Og"), another lovely slow air which you will find on thesession. A traditional tune set to words by an illiterate poet (in the Gallic) from the Scottish Highlands. He dedicated it to his young wife Mary, with lovely descriptions of trees he compared to her. I worked hard to play this on my fiddle, had to adapt it as it goes to high A or B which I can’t reach easily.

I don’t know "Young Catherine" - but I think the two tunes would make a good set of slow airs. Thank you.

Re: Young Catherine

It’s an O’Carolan tune.

Re: Young Catherine

Yeah I think it’s in O’Neil’s with the O’Carolan tunes. I don’t know if that necessarily means it’s definitely by him, but at least people attributed it it to him.

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I have "Carolan :The Life and Times of an Irish Harper" by Donal O’Sullivan, the definitive biography which includes all the tunes he is known to have written - and the tune isn’t there. It’s not in Bonnie Shaljean’s Appendix of 2001 either. So very probably not by Carolan. Could it be Scottish, see my comment above?

Re: Young Catherine

Ah well, live and learn.

Re: Young Catherine

@goose
Are you sure? Read what Susan K writes.

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Re: Young Catherine

I found this on tunearch.org

YOUNG CATHERINE (Caitilin Og). AKA and see "Caitríona Ní Néill," "As I went forth to view the plain." Irish, Air or Planxty (4/4 time). A Dorian. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. The tune was attributed by Captain Francis O’Neill to the Irish harper Turlough O’Carolan (1670-1738), though it is very doubtful he actually composed it. Donal O’Sullivan, in his definitive Carolan: The Life Times and Music of an Irish Harper (1958), declined to include the tune among the bard’s compositions. The alternate title, “As I went forth…” given by O’Neill is the first line of the song “Katherine Ogie,” and indeed, “Young Catherine” appears to be a variant of that ancient song tune (see notes under spelling “Katharine Oggle”).

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Re: Young Catherine

Check out https://thesession.org/tunes/9382 for another setting.

The Baltimore Consort’s recording was the first one I could find; I came across it after a local early music group programmed some early Scots music for a concert. Great tune no matter the setting.

Re: Young Catherine

Great stuff, Kenneth. That was what I was looking for, different names, recordings and settings 🙂 Seems very plausible this is actually a scottish tune then.

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Re: Young Catherine

Piping sounded fine Ketil - I see you have added a fiddler to your line up since the last video! I always thought Caitlin Og had the characteristics of an O’Carolan composition but the evidence seems to be against it.

Re: Young Catherine

Thank you very much, christy! Yes, what would a piper be without a fiddler! 🙂 We are very happy to add Espen to our duo. We will continue doing low whistle /bouzouki numbers, but will gradually add fiddle and pipe tunes to our repertoir. And a couple tunes on dobro too!

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