Dance Music Of Ireland, Volume 8

By Matt Cunningham

Three comments

"Dance Music of Ireland Volume 8" ~ tracks & dances

1 - 3: The Newport Set. 3 figures ~ County Mayo

4 - 10: The Melleray Lancers, 7 figures ~ County Waterford

11 - 15: The Skibbereen Set, 5 figures ~ County Cork

16: Ceili Dance ~ The Three Tunes

17 - 19: The Newport Set, 3 figures
This is listed as ‘Beginners’ Pace’, but is actually the saner pace, old style, before all the hype, adrenalin, competitions and fast and hard dancing turned some set dancing into a the ownership of cliques and ruined set dancing for all types and ages…

Of course, this being a recent choreography it wouldn’t necessarily share the same sane tempos and relaxed ways of the old ways of County Mayo… However, even as a ‘new set’, despite any fabricated claims, it ain’t half bad. The curiosity is that all the signs of a manufactured-for-competition set are clearly there, as is also true of certain other sets, including from Mayo "The Claddagh", starting with the number of figures. Back in pre-80’s there were a number of choreographers having fun inventing sets and history in order to win medals in the many growing opportunities for set dance. Most of the ones I’d met were raised on the ways of Coimisiun le Rince Gaelga, something akin to Miss Milligan and her cronies, alias the R.S.C.D.S., and similar organizations…

I’d love to say just ‘each to their own’, but so much damage has been done over time by the power crazed and manic… 😏

20: A Waltz Selection

"Matt Cunningham’s Dance Music of Ireland" - transcriptions

- a collection of 298 traditional Irish dance tunes with chords, as featured on his first 10 recordings, volumes 1 - 10 of "Dance Music of Ireland".
Dave Mallinson Publications, 1999