tunebook 276 tunes.
Irish born and raised. Mid 30s. My weapon of choice is whistle, and when I’m at home I prefer playing Bb and C whistles. At sessions I usually play either a Michael Burke (for the bigger, louder sessions) or a Jerry Freeman tweaked Generation (for quieter sessions). Next on my shopping list for session whistles are a Cillian Ó Briain tweaked Feadóg and a Killarney.
I have an Olwell flute that I get great enjoyment from when not playing the whistle.
Learning the pipes has been a pipe dream of mine for years now, but I was set back and discouraged a few years back by a ‘budget set’ that I bought new but that was completely unplayable - badly leaking bag, inefficient bellows that were also falling apart, and a chanter that even appears to have the holes drilled in the wrong spots - nobody has ever reeded it anywhere near successfully. I since got my hands on a Martin Preshaw chanter that plays very nicely indeed, replaced the leaky bag from the old set, got myself a great piping teacher and got a few pointers in the right direction, although I don’t really have the free time at the moment to really get serious about piping.
My preference definitely tends toward the pure drop, and I generally prefer my tunes to amble along, swing, bounce and bend, rather than trying to rip a hole in the space-time continuum.
If you can only go to one trad music festival in Ireland, it HAS to be Joe Mooney in Drumshanbo in July!
Here’s a couple of clips of my playing:
Reels - The Gooseberry Bush / The Limestone Rock
Reels - The Crooked Road to Dublin / The Ravelled Hank of Yarn
I have built a Java ‘helper’ library called SessionBuddy for querying the API here at thesession.org and parsing the JSON response into an easily usable structure. I hope it might make life a bit easier for any Java developers looking to incorporate the API into their projects.
The SessionBuddy JAR and source code can be found on GitHub at https://github.com/ColmanOB/SessionBuddy
Please note that SessionBuddy is a hobby project and a work in progress, so it may contain bugs and is not intended to be used for any kind of commercial application.
- Some of my own compositions -
Here’s one of the first ‘trad-style’ tunes I wrote:
T: The Devil’s Delight
C: Colman O’B (Dec. 2012)
|: ded ~B3 | GAB ~D3 | ~D3 BAG | ABA AGA |
ded ~B3 | GAB ~D3 | EFG AGF | GBA ~G3 :|
|: dgg dgg | agf efg | edB edB | dBG ~A3 |
dgg agf | efg edB | GBd ~g3 | edB ~G3 :|
|: ded ~B3 | ded ~A3 | ded BAG | AGE ~D3 |
ded ~B3 | ded ~A3 | G (3Bc^d gfg | edB ~G3 :|
This one wasn’t inspired by anything or anyone in particular, but was named after a few epic weekends of craic and booze in Ranelagh on the south side of Dublin. It’s in the main tunes database here:
The member "Slainte" has also turned this jig into a reel:
T: The Humours of Ranelagh
C: Colman O’B (March 2013)
|: DGG BGG | Bdg edB | DFF AFF | fed cAF |
DGG BGG | Bdg ede | def gdB | cAF ~G3 :|
|: ~g3 Bdg | Bdg ~g3 | ~f3 ~a3 | fed cAF |
DGG DAA | (3Bcd g ~e3 | def gdB | cAF ~G3 :|
Here’s a slip jig I put together. I named it in memory of an incident when I lived in London a few years back. I was out walking with a friend around Portobello Road in Notting Hill, and stepped in the squishiest, most scuttery pile of dog sh!te I ever saw and actually slid along the footpath. My friend nearly convulsed with laughter at the sight, and to this day she laughs her head off whenever the incident is mentioned. I very recently had another gross encounter of the turd kind, and first thing I did was email that old friend and told her "I just stepped in a big pile of shite, and it reminded me of you!" I’m not sure whether it’s in Dmix or Gmaj or what…
T: The Portobello Slip
C: Colman O’B (March 2014)
R: slip jig
dge dBG ~B3|ded dBG AGA|dge dBG ~B3|cAc BGE ~D2B|
dge dBG BAB|ded dBG ~A3|dge dBG BAB|cAc BGE ~D2A|
Bdg edg edB|Bdg ~e3 aga|gab age dBG|cAc BGE ~D2A|
Bdg edg edB|Bdg ~e3 ~a3|gab age dBG|cAc BGE ~D2B|
Here is a reel I put together, named for the day my first nephew/Godson was born:
T: The First Day of Summer
C: Colman O’B (May 2013)
| DG (3GGG AGBd | gffg dBGB | ceee dBGA | BAAG AcBA|
| DG (3GGG AGBd | gffg dBGB | ceee dBGB | ABBA ~G (3Bcd ||
| gdBd edBd | gbaf gedB | ceee dBGA | BAAG G~A2 (3Bcd |
| gdBd edBd | gbaf gedB | c2ec dBGB | ABBA ~G3E ||
And a reel named for my favourite spot for a few Friday night tunes. Glasson is not far from Athlone, on the way towards Ballymahon/Longford
T: The High Road to Glasson
C: Colman O’B (Jun. 2013)
|: EAAB cABA | EGDG EGDG | EAAB cded | cABG EAAG :|
| eaag abag | eaag edBA | ~G3 B dGBd | gedB BA ~A2 |
eaag abag | edef g2fg | a2 ge dBGB | cedB ~A3 G |
This one popped into my head after a week of playing tunes and drinking at the Joe Mooney festival in Drumshanbo. This year the temperatures were through the roof, and town was absolutely infested with wasps during the week. On more than one occasion I had to fish a dead wasp out of my pint, so I thought it would be a nice title for a tune!
T: The Wasp in the Pint
C: Colman O’B (Aug. 2014)
| BdcA FDDE | ~F3G ABcA | BdcA ~G3e | fdcA dBcA |
(3Bcd cA F~D3 | FEFG ABcA | BdcA ~G3e | fdcA dABc |
| d~g3 fdcA | dgfg afge | d~3G dGeg | fdcA d2 Bc |
| d~g3 fdcA | dgfg afge | defg ~a3g | fdcA d2 cA |
A hornpipe that I think I wrote, but that has echoes of one or two tunes that are already out there. It is named for a particular mist that rises from the Shannon around Athlone early on those rare still, sunny summer mornings. I don’t make a habit of being up early when I’m down that neck of the woods, so this phenomenon would typically be observed by me on my way home after an extremely late night!
T: Morning Mist on the Shannon
C: Colman O’B
| AG | FEDF AFDF | GFGA BGED | GBdg ecAF | GBAG FAEA |
| FEDF AFDF | GFGA BGED | GBdg ecAF | G3F G2 :|
|: (3Bcd | g3e dBGB | cBAG FADA | g3e dBGB |cedB A2 (3Bcd|
| g3e dBGB | cBAG FADA | GBdg ecAF | G3F G2 :|
And in keeping with the theme of waterways around Athlone:
T: The Shores of Lough Ree
C: Colman O’B (March 2014)
|: GABG cABA | GBdB c2AG | FDAD BDcA | (3BcB (3ABA (3GAG (3DEF |
~G3B cABA | GBdB c2Bc | dged cAFD | [1 AG G2 DE :| [2 AG G2 (3 Bcd ||
|: ~e3d edBA | gfga bgaf | Add^c defg | ~a3f gedB|
~G3B cABA | GBdB c2Bc | dged cAFD | [1 AG G2 (3 Bcd :| [2 AG G2 DE ||