Set Dances Of Ireland: Music For Listening And Dancing

By Various Artists

  1. Tom Mhic’s No. 1
    Tom Mhic’s No. 2
  2. We Won’t Go Home ’til Morning
  3. Seán Dan Neil
    Jazzing With Mag Leary
    Maidhe Dainin O’Se
  4. Dalaigh’s No. 1
    Dalaigh’s No. 2
  5. Port An Bhand
    Seán Coughlin’s No. 1
    Seán Coughlin’s No. 2
  6. The Greencastle
  7. Collier’s
    London Lasses
  8. Blackberry Blossom
    The Five Mile Chase
  9. The Boyne Hunt
    Tom Ward’s Downfall
    The Congress
  10. The Clare
    The Trip To Athlone
    The Leg Of The Duck
  11. The Star Of Munster
    Down The Broom
    The Green Fields Of America
  12. Dunphy’s
    The Liverpool
  13. Old Man Dillon
    The Rose In The Heather
  14. Bill The Weaver’s
    The Humours Of Kilkenny
  15. Brannigan’s
    Padraig O’Keefe’s
  16. Off She Goes
  17. St. Anne’s
  18. The Liverpool
    Tom Billy’s
  19. Mickey Duggan
  20. The Priest’s Leap
    My Darling Asleep
  21. The Rakes Of Mallow
  22. The Lark In The Morning
  23. Abhanbláth
  24. Joan Crowley’s
    Buy Me A Banana
    The Girl I Left Behind

Eleven comments

“Set Dances Of Ireland: Music For Listening And Dancing”

Produced by Larry Lynch, Published by Séadna
Sound Engineer: Harry Bradley
Illustrator: Kevin O’Shea
Text & annotation of tunes, “The Music”: Marcas Ó Murchú
Notes, “The Musicians” & “The Dances”: Larry Lynch

“Set Dances of Ireland: Tradition & Evolution” by Larry Lynch, the book!

Seádna Books & Dal gCais Publications, 1989
A4 format, 323 pages
ISBN: 0-9623366-0-2 (U.S.A.)
ISBN: 0-9514848-0-X (Ireland)

Seádna Books
88 Walter Street
San Francisco, California 94114

2nd Printing, 1991

John O’Donnell
c/o The Connacht Tribune
15 Market Street
Galway, Eire / Ireland

Highly recommended, as this is the only publication on the subject that I feel makes a resonable attempt to incorporate in it’s pages and story something of the people the dances were collected from, with pictures and some quotes. This weighty tome has more heart than the many other publications that tend to just amass dances and figures and with short and limited references to sources. I admit my bias, I am interested in more than just the mechanics of the dance. We both like to read and see the heart and context of a tradition, and YES!, that can be done in print, and even better if it also has pictures to go along with the weave… For us, this is about ‘quality’ rather than ‘quantity’, heart and community rather than flash and competition…

For the inexperienced the notations might be confusing, but I love it. He tries to further represent his sources by using their descriptions of the dances, their terminology. At the back of the book is a glossary of terms and movements with illustrations, to help…

There were, as I know it, four cassettes of dance music and this, the fifth recording, a CD.

Included with the CD is a generous and informed booklet, one of the largests I’ve ever found tightly fitted into the case ~

“The Music” ~ 9 pages
“The Musicians” ~ 6 pages
“The Dances” ~ 7 pages

Lazyhound, I haven’t forgotten my promise. Sometimes life throws a wally and you’re forced to work around it… 😉

“Set Dances Of Ireland: Music For Listening And Dancing” ~ Dances & Musicians

1 – 6: The Polka Set (West Kerry)
Brendan Begley ~ melodeon

7 – 12: The Caledonian Set (Clare)
Tommy McCarthy ~ concertina
Eamon McGivney ~ fiddle
Michael Tubridy ~ flute

13 – 18: The Square Jig (Kerry – Black Valley, Kenmare)
Johnny O’Leary ~ melodeon

19 – 24: The Polka Set (South Kerry)
Denis McMahon ~ fiddle
Timmy O’Connor ~ melodeon
Paudy Scully ~ flute

I adore this disk

Not just for the music - the booklet is really superb.
There are some dangling links in the track list -
“Saint Anne’s” would be linked to the tune if you change the spelling. Dunphy’s is not linked - perhaps “Dunphy’s” was typed in without the “hornpipe”? The Collier’s is also in the DB, under this name, and I can’t see why it’s not linked, unless you needed to spell out “reel” for it to work.

It is probably the apostrophe. Thanks sixholes, I’ll correct those. I usually try to follow up links when I first submit something, but sometimes I don’t get to, and sometimes I forget to return… I’m returning now… 😉

“Set Dances Of Ireland: Music For Listening And Dancing” ~ solo!!!

I like this recording, great musicians, but well worth chasing up if only for the following ‘solo’ unadulterated tracks, Brendan naked, and Johnny too ~ brilliant!!! I love it…

1 – 6: The Polka Set (West Kerry)
Brendan Begley ~ melodeon

13 – 18: The Square Jig (Kerry – Black Valley, Kenmare)
Johnny O’Leary ~ melodeon

For anyone who happens across this recording, the CD I have is a full half step sharp, sped up by that much. I can only guess that was done to reduce the total size so it would fit on a standard CD… 😏

I can’t remember for sure, but I think the recordings were possibly as much as a full step sharp, meaning that tunes in G are sounding in A and those in D as E… Full and half step sharp, sped up, recordings are sadly not uncommon and I believe have aggravated the rise in tempo of this music. I personally don’t consider it a healthy influence on either the music or the dance…