Molloy, Brady, Peoples

By Matt Molloy, Paul Brady, Tommy Peoples

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Fifty-one comments

A great album, on of the classics.

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Music to stand back and listen in awe.
Matt Molloy can bring tears to my eyes just listening to his rolls. Tommy Peoples, so much lift and swing, Paul Brady, breaking out of the accompanyment sometimes to play melody, first class. Oh Lord, to meet such people some day!

So I’ve been wondering -- on the guest tutor lessons, does the guest tutor give the assessments, or do the regular tutors do it, anyone know?

Classic album

Very exciting stuff indeed! Slightly marred at times by Brady’s slightly off the wall rhythyms but a classic nonetheless!


I did a Paul McGrattan lesson and Conal gave the assessment.

I’ve written down the text to track 5, I’ve got one word I just cant figure out in socond part, so can anybody help me with this?
Here’s what I’ve got now:

Shamrock Shore
Ye brave young sons of Eirinn’s Isle,
I hope you will attend a while,
to the wrongs dear old Ireland,
I’m going to relate.

’Twas black and course it ??? the day,
that our parliament was taken away,
and all our grief and suffering,
Comminces from that day.

For our hardy sons and daughters fair,
to other countries must repair,
and leave their native land behind,
in sorrow to deplore.

For to seek employment they must roam
Far far away from their native home
From that sore oppressed island
That they call the Shamrock Shore.

Now Ireland is with plenty blessed
But the people they are sore oppressed
All by those cursed tyrants
we are forced for to obey

Some haughty landlords fond to please,
our houses and our lands they’ll seize
To put fifty farms into one
and take us all away

Regardless of the widows cries,
The mothers tears and the orphans sighs
In the thousands we are driven from home
Which grieves our hearts full sore.

We are fraught by famine and disease
we emigrated across the sea
From that sore oppressed island
that they call the Shamrock Shore

Our sustenance is taken away
our tithes and taxes for to pay
to support that law protected church
to which they do adhere.

And our Irish gentry, well, you know,
to other countries they do go.
And the money from our Ireland is
squandered here and there.

But if those squires would stay at home
And not to other countries roam.
But to build mills and factories here
To employ the laboring core

For if we had trade and commerce there
To me no nation could compare
To that sore oppressed island that they
call the Shamrock Shore.

John Bull he boasts and he laughs with scorn
And he says that the Irishman is born
To be always discontented
for at home he cannot agree

But we’ll banish this court from our land
And in harmony like brothers stand
To demand the rights of Ireland
Let us all united be!

And our parliament and college green
for to assemble ‘twill be seen
And happy days in Erinn’s isle
we soon will have once more.

And dear old Ireland soon will be
a great and glorious country
And peace and blessing soon will smile
all round the Shamrock Shore.

The answer

The word is “curs-ed” - ie, cursed, but broken up in to 2 syllables - I think it would have one of those French “grave” accents - if that’s what you call them - over the 2nd syllable, but I don’t know how to do that on a computer.
The same thing happens with the word “oppressed” = “oppress-ed” , in later verses.


Thrid last verse, I think it’s “discord”, not “this court”.

“Third” - “not thrid”. Sorry !. “Cursed” turns up again in the 3rd line of the 5th verse - it’s the same.
also - “Parliament IN college green”, I think.[ 2nd last verse.]

Great album

Hey. Does anyone know where I can get a reasonably priced copy of this album. I desperately need it, but the cheapest I can find it for is about $41, and I’d rather not spend that much. Please help me if you can. Thanks so much.



Thanks so much. $20 BUCKS! Excellent. Can’t thank you enough.


Got to be one of the great albums of the ITM revival. Chock-full of catchy tunes played in a way that brings out their fire and emotional potential by outstanding practitioners, each of whom gets a chance to demonstrate what he can do on his own.

Yep a great album but I just wish the did more repeats of the tunes.

Shamrock Shore; author ? Origins ?

I first heard this album in 1982, and was instantly struck by the song. Such an eloquent portrait of the struggling 19th century Ireland.

I agree with the above about “discord’ and ”cursed".

I’ve performed it once, a unison duet with a mate in a folk club. May do so again soon. But what I’d like to know, not having the liner notes, is the origins of the song.

Another view……..?????

Here’s a review of this album I found a few years ago – anyone care to comment, or guess who wrote it ?

“In rhapsodic utterances Tony McMahon* calls us to listen to Peoples, Molloy, Brady, Tommy , Matt, Paul – at the risk of having a fresh hump affixed to our back we add fiddle, flute, guitar.
Tremendous music played by three masters but at such breakneck speed as to create a feeling of exasperation. Speed is not a musical quality, and when a tune is played faster than it should be the subtle proportions between the notes and the larger elements are destroyed and the music loses its’ savour.
One’s judgement is confirmed. Paul Brady plays two reels solo. One is not distracted by an accompaniment. The evident musicianship notwithstanding, the guitar is not suitable for playing Irish dance music, any more than the harpsichord, piano, piano-accordion. One hope dashed, Mulligan seems an unlikely protagonist for undoing the conquest.
At the risk of providing a ready-made formula for identifying the purist or crank may we say that Irish traditional music is a solo art, its’ quality lies in the treatment of the melody, in the deftness of the ornamentation and in the contrast in the length of the accented and unaccented notes. When a reel is played faster than it should, say at a speed greater than eight seconds a part, the melody suffers from compression. Those refinements are blurred.
Adding an accompaniment has the same effect.
Willy Matthew’s sleeve design, a monochrome in brown depicting the three players, discloses a first-hand acquaintance with the music and its’ atmosphere”.

[ *Tony McMahon wrote the sleeve notes. ]

The actual pitch of the record at 33-rpm is slightly higher than Eb, though recorded with the Eb flute and the fiddle tuned up to Eb, I heard somewhere that it was speeded up just a little to fit it on to an LP. This may be the case, but regardless of that, the actual increase in speed would be indistinguishable.

The simple fact is that this is how fast they play. like it or not, this is the music. If youhave a feeling of exasperation, get over it

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It wisnae me……….!!!

I just thought it was in interesting review, Michael, which does not mean I agree with it. I love the recording.


To avoid confusion, Tony McMahon wrote the sleeve notes to the actual record - not the “review” reproduced above.

the simple fact is that few people would disagree that it’s a desert Island disk

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I wouldn’t disagree. Their playing sounds fast, but isn’t actually that fast. And no matter how fast they play, they never “rush” unlike bad amateur “musicians” who claim that they are believers in Mr. Molloy.

Sorry, I’ve just noticed “worshippers” is probably a more appropriate word than “believers”.

“a Mighty Session”?

Look at the disc. It reads:


Is it the same on the LP?

I just got this through the post! What an amazing recording. It’s lit up my day.

Fantastic stuff allright, Paul Brady should definitely have played more of those guitar melodies in his recordings, I love listening to that kind of playing


Brady’s guitar solo is one of the best tracks of traditional Irish dance music I’ve ever heard played on guitar.
Still nobody guessed who the “reviewer” was ?

Kenny, I would rule out our own Floss the Tethers. Could it have been Siobhan Long ? The style is certainly reminiscent of hers.

Ooh, it wasn’t me, sir!

It’s certainly not Siobhán Long (far too young).

My guess would be Ciaran Carson or Fintan Vallely.

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Male - mid-60s when he wrote it - , no longer with us……

Séamus Ennis ?


Getting warm…………………………

Well, by a process of elimination using dates of births and deaths, the only name I can come up with is that of ………..
Brendan Breathnach !


The man wins a coconut. 🙂

I knew he had some controversial views about the music, not unlike Sean O´Riada.

“Matt Molloy, Paul Brady, Tommy Peoples” ~ & the B.S. about keys

Sorry gang, but this was obviously heavily diddled by the processing, meaning the techies between the recording and the final pressing of the recording. It’s a shame in a sense that this is used as an excuse for heating up the tunes to melting. The inconsistencies in the diddling are all the proof anyone needs. The reels were bumped up more than the jigs, by comparison twice as much if we’re just measuring frequencies, pitch. That variety of treatments, goosing the speed up, varies from a full step up, or as someone suggested, Eb, and there’s only one example of that gentle treatment, to E+ / F… The proof is in the treatment and the varying results. All the reels have been goosed up the most, two and a half steps, verging on F, while the jigs tended to be goosed just by a step and a half, around E.

Also, all goosing / diddling aside, they play “The Foxhunters’ Reel”, track 8, up a step from G Major, in A Major…

Anything for the punters eh? Give ’em a thrill, and some have actually swallowed it hook, line and sinker. The influences of this very important recording, and similar, and related, “The Bothy Band”, can hardly be understated…

I remain by my main judgement on some of the over exuberant approaches to this music ~ SPEED KILLS! However you choose to take it, take responsibility and don’t use this recording as an excuse for the abuse of manic out-of-control playing at ridiculous tempos…

Track 12, Paul Brady, got the ‘light’ treatment’, only up a step to Eb… 😏

Track 12 also includes uilleann pipe drones, and I have as yet not met any in Eb… Maybe there was a sample looped and raised from D to Eb, but I’m not buying that…

Track 1 ~ reels: “Matt Peoples’ 1 & 2”

122 bpm ~ tempo goosed up two and a half steps, approximate & assuming…

105 bpm ~ correcting pitch, if assumptions are right this is the likely original tempo recorded in the studio, before speeding everything up…

Real, manufactured or imagined, the hounds are quick on the heels for blood ~ assumption, expectation, aspiration…

Track 1 ~ reels: “Matt Peoples’ 1 & 2”

A more accurate reassessment of assumed pitch & tempo ~

108 bpm ~ correcting pitch, if assumptions are right this is the likely original tempo recorded in the studio, before everything was diddled and sped up…


It’s a great cd, and a classic, but these days, I don’t actually like it. All sounds too hurried.
Noting comments above on pitch I may try bringing it back down a bit, so easy to do now.

Jean Michel Vellion

Jean Michel Vellion’s version of ‘The Rambling Pitchfork’ is so close to Tommy’s version here… that he must and learnt it from this album. 🙂


Re: Matt Molloy, Paul Brady, Tommy Peoples

Concerning the song (The Shamrock Shore):

I think I understood the 5th verse that was unclear to Gard. to me it sounds like
“’Twas black and course at once the day,” …
but since I’m not a native speaker, I may be wrong 😉

Re: Matt Molloy, Paul Brady, Tommy Peoples

It’s “black and cursèd was the day”.

Re: Matt Molloy, Paul Brady, Tommy Peoples

… as pointed out 11 years ago.

Re: Matt Molloy, Paul Brady, Tommy Peoples

Why has it been sped up?

I think beyond a shadow of a doubt it has been. I understand it used to happen in order to fit things on ye olde media like vinyl (i think???). But without those constraints, it’s a bit pointless, and detrimental. If it wasn’t that these guys are legends, you’d be tempted to think it was trying to kid people you could play faster with the same technical virtuosity. So i’m puzzled.

It doesn’t sound right to speed or slow things artificially to me. its my experience that you phrase things differently playing at different speeds, and besides the instrument sounds don’t sound right. I can see past it to what is some very fine playing, but without a doubt, i’d have enjoyed it more before the tinkering.