One Out Of The Fort

By Johnny Henry

Six comments

Music from Mayo/Sligo

1922-1996, fiddle/flute playing brother of Kevin H, flauter/piper long resident in Chicago now; this is from Kevin’s Bogfire label, with notes by James Kelly. Recorded at various dates from the early 60s to late 80s. There are a few tracks with his siblings Kevin and Verona joining in. The Old Killavil is a jig usually called the Pathway to the Well. The Ewe Reel is supposed to be a schottische according to the notes but is played as a polka, unrelated to the reel of that name. The Five Crossroads is Fred Finn’s #2.

Track 3 isn’t the usual Wise Maid by a long shot; it’s a 12 part reel that comes from Johnny Gorman, a famous Roscommon blind piper. In the spoken introduction Kevin explains that he had half of it but had forgotten the rest; another musician supplied the balance - he thinks! I’ll have to scrupulously check but that 1st half sounds much like that of the tune I submitted here as Michael Gallagher’s Fancy: That tune I obtained from a private recording of MG, a great Leitrim piper. His and this tune definitely depart in the 2nd half. A 4 part reel titled The Wise Maid is in one of the Kerr’s books, too, and I’d noticed its similarity to parts of Gallagher’s tune - along with other reels as well, Four Courts and Pinch of Snuff most notably.

Got this via CDBaby for chicken feed, $15 USD. I’d heard a track or two of Johnny before, he was a terrific old time musician, very plaintive high B on that violin, bit like the old Kentucky fiddler JW Day. I’d also read how he added something like 8 more parts to Michael Gorman’s 6 part Mountain Road, too…I’ve finally gotten the hang of the 3rd part myself.

So this is still available ? I would love to hear it .
I remember going to a great session with Kevin Henry and Verona over ten years ago in Tubbercirry .
Wonderful music .


CDBaby, Baby

Bought my copy for $18 off CDBaby. It’s a Bogfire release, they’re slow to promote it for whatever reason. Will check out the Bogfire site once the tubes for the Internets become unclogged; seems like half of the sites out there don’t work today.

Re: One Out Of The Fort

Is this Johnny Henry the same as the Johnny “Watt” Henry of ?

BTW, the album is still available, both in CD form and MP3.

Re: One Out Of The Fort

Yes it is Sol. Must have a look at that recording myself.

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