Music Of Sligo

By Peter Horan And Fred Finn

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  1. The Duke Of Leinster
    The London Lasses
  2. Farewell To Erin
    The Flying Column
  3. The Scotsman Over The Border
    The Tenpenny Bit
  4. The Maid Of Mt. Cisco
    The Shaskeen
    The Bag Of Spuds
  5. Fred Finn’s
  6. The Ebb Tide
    The Morning Dew
  7. Kitty’s Wedding
  8. The Mullingar Races
    The Boy On The Hilltop
  9. Martin Wynne’s No. 1
    Martin Wynne’s No. 2
  10. Michael Reilly’s
    The Navvy On The Shore
  11. The Killavil
  12. The Boys Of The Lough
    The Devils Of Dublin
  13. The Providence
    The Boys Of Ballinahinch
  14. The Shirt I Left Behind Me
    The Ballymote
  15. The Humours Of Ballyconnell
  16. The Sunny Banks
    The Mountain Top
    The Laurel Tree

Forty-five comments

Finn & Horan

Two of the giants of Sligo music. This is a recording made for Comhaltas. I don’t know if it’s still available.

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Are these the actual tune names given in the liner notes? I lack liner notes for my copy (ahem!) and some of these names don’t match what I had assumed they’d call the tunes. For instance, several of these don’t match the names given for the respective tunes in the Horan and Finn sections of “Trip to Sligo”. (Or the “Mountain Road” tunebook, for that matter.)

I’ll check

I’ll check for you tonight, Sol, but I’m having computer problems at the moment. Will reply as soon as I can.

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As in the notes………

I’ve looked at the sleeve notes accompanying the tape, Sol, and I’ve listed them almost verbatim. The only change I made was changing “The Laurel Bush” [ in the notes ] to the “Laurel Tree” which I think is more common. I have “Trip To Sligo” - which tunes were you querying?

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Sorry for the slow response! Let me see:

Album Name versus my expected name:
London Lasses is Gardiner’s Favorite (TtS)
I think these both are common names for this tune.
Flying Column is Maid in the Cherry Tree (TtS)
Pretty sure Maid is not the proper name for this tune.
Navvy on the Shore is Pride of Cluinte (TtS)
Certain Pride is right.
Ebb Tide is Dash to Portobello (Sean Ryan tunebook)
I think Ebb Tide is a common alternate name.
Ballymote is Tripping on the Mountain (Mountain Road tunebook)
No clue here.

Also, Trip to Sligo has a "The Flying Column:, but it is just a version of Sunny Banks. And I’m having a hard time convincing myself that the Mountain Top is the same tune that Seamus Tansey (and I think Dervish) recorded by that name, though it at least seems to be very similar.

PS According to Comhaltas, this is still available on cassette. I ordered a copy ten days ago, hope to see it soon!

Just got it in the mail!

Other random notes

Instead of names, focusing on the links here for a moment. The “Bag of Spuds” on the definitely isn’t the one linked to. (I suspected the album track is mislabeled.) “Kitty’s Wedding” link goes to the jig of that name, but it’s the hornpipe on the album. The “Navvy on the Shore” link very definitely isn’t the tune on the album (which, as I said above, is properly “Pride of Cluinte”). The “Ebb Tide” link goes to a completely different tune of that name.

Also “The Killavil” link goes to “Apples in Winter”, which I would say is a fairly distant relative of the “Killavil Jig”.

Selling a CD copy of the tape

Does anybody know what the copyright laws would entail were I to sell cd copies of this long out-of-print record?

Alternate tune name for “The Flying Column”?

Trying to learn this tune off the Fredd Finn and Peter Horan album. Anyone know an alternate name? None of the ABC sources have it under that name. Thanks!

Re: The Flying Column

The tune called “The Flying Column” which appears in the Bulmer & Sharpley’s collection is what we call “the other Farewell to Erin” in these parts, albeit with the parts reversed. On this database here:

I haven’t heard the Finn/Horan album, but hope to one day as it is spoken of in reverential terms around here.

Hope this helps.

Actually that “Flying Column” is the first one in the set ( the one the album calls “Farewell to Erin”). Meemtp is looking for the second tune in that set.

As I said above (albeit before meemtp asked the question), the tune the album calls “The Flying Column” is “The Maid in the Cherry Tree” in Trip to Sligo. Hmm… it’s on this board as “Goodbye To Ireland”/“Austin Tierney’s” (

The Ballymote

“The Ballymote” polka is so not “Tripping on the Mountain”. I must have been smoking craic when I posted that. “The Ballymote” is actually the tune of the Scottish song “My Love is But a Lassie Yet.” (Cue discussion on whether Sligo polkas are really polkas.)

The version of this over at the Comhaltas Archives appears to be different than this, which is the same as I have. Extra tracks at the CA are:

Fred & Peter’s / Mountain Pathway
Fred Finn’s [John William Hunt’s]
Frost is all Over / Battering Ram
George White’s Favourite / Miss Thornton
Music in the Glen / McFadden’s

While it appears to be missing a few tracks, like the The Maid Of Mt. Cisco set. The CA version also has 17 tracks instead of 16. Nice to have more bang for the buck from these great musos.

Peter Horan Memorial Concert

Hi All,

I’m Peter Horan’s Grandaughter and the comments you all have posted below are fantastic he’d be chuffed!! Just letting you all know that we, his family, have organised a memorial concert for Peter Horan which will take place in Gurteen, Co. Sligo on 15th October 2011, proceeds from the concert are going to North West Hospice, we will have a website up in the next couple of weeks with line up and all the details. Anyone interested in getting in touch please dont hestitate to contact us by emailing

Again thanks a million for the lovely comments, really appreciated. Hope to see you all on the 15th October!!

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Re: Music Of Sligo by Peter Horan And Fred Finn

it’s no longer available from this website. damn it!

Re: Music Of Sligo by Peter Horan And Fred Finn

Yes, that was a disappointment.

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Re: Music Of Sligo by Peter Horan And Fred Finn

It’s truly sad that Comhaltas has reissued virtually nothing from its back catalogue in CD format. Someone told me a while back that the masters had disappeared. I seriously hope that’s not true.

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Re: Music Of Sligo by Peter Horan And Fred Finn

I forgot to mention that there’s an earlier Horan and Finn album which has never been released. This was recorded by PJ Curtis for the Mulligan label, but, shortly afterwards and before it could be released, the rights to the company were sold to a multi-national which regarded the album as ‘non-commercial’.

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Re: Music Of Sligo by Peter Horan And Fred Finn

By the eightfold lucky shoes of Sleipnir, thank you, Odin!

Re: Music Of Sligo by Peter Horan And Fred Finn

Thank you, Odin!

Re: Music Of Sligo by Peter Horan And Fred Finn

Thanks, O mighty Odin.

Re: Music Of Sligo by Peter Horan And Fred Finn

Thankye thankye.

Thank You Very Much!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 🙂

Copy of “Music of Sligo”??

It appears this recording is not commercially available and I have seen it shared by some in the past. Was hoping that someone could please share?

All Hail the Might Odin!

“A bit longer” indeed!

Re: Music Of Sligo

Following up on my notes from 11 years ago (!) -- the “Bag of Spuds” on this album is rather than the one linked above. I believe “Bag of Spuds” is indeed the standard name for this tune.

Re: Music Of Sligo

And links are editable now! I think I’ve got all the tunes going to the right place.

Dates of recordings

I just came across this post from 2009 which casts a bit of interesting light on the history of the recordings used by Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann to create this LP, around 1987 or 1988. See
user name of the poster is camb60, so cheers, hope you don’t mind the quote here:

“A year or two after Fred Finn’s death in January of 1986, Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann released the ”Music of Sligo“ LP. It comprised five tracks from a December 1985 recording session by Horan and Finn in Dublin, four tracks from their 1976 session in Dublin, two tracks from a 1959 Radio Éireann recording of them made by Ciarán Mac Mathúna, and five tracks selected from their playing during the 1970s in South Sligo. The album is uneven because of this and the sound quality is not the best on some tracks, especially the earlier recordings. Horan and Finn however, after a lifetime of playing together, were beautifully in sync with each other and so comfortable and capable that the music they made seemed effortless and seamless. This more than makes up for the any audio deficiencies.”

Can anyone say which recordings were which? Some classic recordings - of more than passing interest!

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Re: Music Of Sligo

To clarify, or not, things, it seems that the original LP had just had a short existence as CCE withdrew from sale this album in which tunes recorded by James Murray and Fred Finn just snuck. CCE admitted its fault in the James Murray/Ollie Ross album “The Powelsborough Lassies”, mentionning that the misunderstanding concerned tracks 2, 8, 10, 11 and 16. See here
Furthermore, there is, on the “ecotonal” release a seventeenth track which consists of “Michael Reilly/Navvy on the shore”, but this time recorded one tone lower which is more common way of playing those tunes. I don’t know wether that release by ecotonal is a copy of the original erroneous LP or not. But given that it had been posted in 2007 by Bernie S., perhaps is it the original as an ephemerous edition of the corrected album seems to have been ouput in 2008, as said on ITMA archives here (“with deletions and additions” as said there).
In conclusion, I must say that I have not understood what, at the end, the present list of tunes concerns, the original or the corrected album ?…

Re: Music Of Sligo

Track # 7 audio on “Youtube” :

Flute solo by Peter Horan - also shows a scan of the cassette tape insert with the original track listing.

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